Salvaging Hope by Charles A. Waugaman

Salvaging Hope

Like truth out of living
I salvage blueberries, one by one,
From the tangled mat of the meadow.
Small as they are,
The grasses fight for them,
Vetch maneuvers in camouflage,
And wild rose claws at my wrists.
Birds spy from the hedgerow
And sing indifferent melodies
Hoping to lure me away
From their succulent repast.
Why this surprising demand?
Blueberries are wealth:
They are something of sun
And something of soil;
They are sky and wildness;
Beauty and wine,
Winnowed from weedy worthlessness,
Blueberries glow in my palm
As welcome … as hope.

By Charles A. Waugaman

All Rights Reserved


Welcoming Hope: Poems for those in need
Lora Homan Zill and Ellen G. Olinger, Editors
Charles A. Waugaman, Art Editor, Illustrator

Elin Grace Publishing, 2007
Oostburg, Wisconsin
ISBN 978-0-9729848-4-3

This is a book with TIME OF SINGING (TOS).  Please see their Books Page for ordering information, or simply more info in general.  All proceeds benefit TOS.

This lovely poem by Charles was published first in 1974:  Jean’s Journal Anthology, These Are My Jewels.  

Post updated on August 15, 2015

12 thoughts on “Salvaging Hope by Charles A. Waugaman

  1. I happened to click over to Time of Singing, and I really did appreciate the comment about the nature of Christian poetry in the sidebar. Faith of every sort is being mischaracterized these days, and sometimes even the churches fall into the trap! Nice to read such a description.

    As for this poem – it’s both lovely and timely. I have a plant saucer outside my window I use for feeding sparrows, bluejays and mockingbirds. I had to give up seed because what seemed like a million pigeons had taken up residence. Now, I put out shelled raw peanuts, whole grain bread and – blueberries!

    The mockingbirds eat the blueberries, of course. Yesterday, one flew in and ate four in rapid succession. Then, it popped up on the railing and began to sing, and sing, and sing. It was a different way of saying what this lovey poem says.


    1. I smile as I read your comment which must have just crossed as I posted mine. I thought when i read about the blueberries I could read it with “figs” instead, because our fig tree has had a bountiful harvest this year. When I go out to gather the figs, the mockingbird which visits earlier is already sitting nearby singing and singing.


  2. There is something of the miraculous in the last three blueberries of the season sitting in your hand… You look at them for a long time before you eat then… you may even put them in a dish for a few days and come back upon them to reinforce the wonder you feel…

    Wonderful post… many thanks.


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