Poet: Born in Montana, Tim Pilgrim is an associate professor of journalism at Western Washington University, with college degrees in education, English and communications.
Poetry then: "I've been writing poetry since sixth grade in Dillon, Mont. Published 'The woods near our home' in my class booklet. I kept on writing."
Poetry now: Work and life kept Pilgrim's writing to a minimum until the mid 1980s, when he began publishing more. He began working two-thirds time at Western in 2006, which allowed his poetic output to increase further. His poems can be found at timothypilgrim.org.
December morning inside my window
I catch orange reflection - ladybugs
piled on more ladybugs, all, asleep.
I study markings - black circles
darkened by frost - think I see
what causes them to clump like this.
They must know group warmth
means survival and, so, will starve
all winter - shudder collectively
as snow mounds high outside.
Glass shuts out a bit of cold,
brightens hope, permits belief
they might endure. I tug one loose,
scoop her to a houseplant leaf,
return, rescue more - finally breathe.
At sundown, only tiny shadows freeze.