Alaskan writer and poet, Eva Saulitis passed away this
weekend. Eva has touched almost every writer in the state in one way or
another, through her writing, her teaching, her kindness, her support, her
example of living completely and authentically.
by posting memories on Facebook, excerpts of her writing, photographs of her
exuberant smile. I felt a certain peace in knowing that others were grieving
as well; as if the weight of my sorrow was lessened a bit because it was
carried by so many others. This is the writing community of Alaska – brave and
I’m betting that many of us could. But her words are more eloquent than any of
mine. I turn you to her work, poetry in Many
Ways to Say It and Prayer in Wind.
Prose in Leaving Resurrection, Into Great Silence, and forthcoming in Becoming Earth. Her work in AQR and
other literary magazines. All of it generous and insightful.
and her writing meant to me. We talked about how often we thought of each other
in the early mornings, just five miles apart, scribbling in our journals,
looking out at the same mountains. I’m glad I had a chance to hold her hand and
tell her how much I respected and cared for her.
will not let our busy lives squeeze out the opportunity to share our admiration
and support for our fellow writers. Every voice is important, everything you write
adds to a great store of goodness, and every time you share your work and
share your respect, you enrich the world.
She lay down upon rough low plants. Unbuttoned
blouse. Laid strips of moss across scalpel’s track.
Gauzed, fern by fern, a glade upon. Shrouded
torso, eye to ankle, in swaths of fleabane, iris,
hellebore. Tattooed back in cranberry ink &
nettle-scratch. Body deconstructed by plant
& mineral, self replaced, cell by cell by soil
by water. Grafted onto earth’s skin. Adorned finger
bones with bones of deer & marten. Mind changed into
mind of meadow. Accomplished in an eye-blink
when God’s ruthless gaze turned a moment away
~by Eva Saulitis, the final poem in Prayer in Wind