Making Landfall

Making Landfall




Making Landfall: poems by Paul Lindholdt.

Publication date: December 2018. 74 pages of poetry; glossy cover; fine endpapers.

Praise for Making Landfall

“The lyricism and power of Paul Lindholdt’s evocative poems bring both the nature and culture of the American colonies to life in ways no history book ever could. A work of remarkable originality and insight, Making Landfall is a brilliant journey into the dark heart of our nation’s colonial past.”

—Michael P. Branch, author of Rants from the Hill and How to Cuss in Western

“The well-wrought poems in Paul Lindholdt’s Making Landfall speak in the many voices from America’s colonial frontiers. The personas include Native Americans, colonists both male and female, the poet, the outcast, the illicit lover, the persecuted, and the persecutor. Lindholdt’s notes offer a steady guide to the multitude of speakers in this deeply satisfying collection.”

—Priscilla Long, author of Crossing Over: Poems and Fire & Stone: Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?

from Making Landfall


Out the back door I scuttle ash

and trim plantain from the creek path

where you pace, and you raise your eyes

to my face but do not speak.

You are trying to recall the sound of joy.


Your sorrow comes in feathered waves

like a bird struggling in your throat

and I picture you stretched on the grass

beside the creek, the song of flesh

beneath your silver buttons

forbidden by every dictate of my place.


And I know you fear him and that is why

you dare not speak, and I hear your breath

catch and shallow when he nears,

and I wait daylong for magic words to rise

to your lips, for you to behold me as a man

even if I am your husband’s servant.


Lift your eyes in signal if you would join me.

Then step into the shadows where

I am biding to remind you who you are.

(This poem was nominated for the Pushcart Prize.)

Paul Lindholdt is a professor of English at Eastern Washington University, with a PhD in early American literature. His preparation in poetry began with a graduate degree when he studied with Annie Dillard and won an Academy of American Poets Prize. Shortly thereafter he began publishing these poems in Beloit Poetry Journal, Chicago Review, Poet Lore, Poetry Northwest, Sewanee Review, and Southern Humanities Review. All told, twenty-four of these forty-five poems have appeared in arts journals, history journals, and standalone books.



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