Wild Earth Poems by Cindy Ellen Hill

picture of Cindy Hill
Photo by Kristy Dooley.  

Though she knows that fire rages / in a nation’s soul as surely as in its forests, Cindy Ellen Hill has the soul of a Druid in love with the wild world and the full-blown beauty of “ordinary days.” That love is as strong as the rowan tree she admires and embraces all of God’s creation in this series of gorgeous sonnets, which are as explosive in content as they are formal in structure. Wild Earth is a passionate book that bepeaks the best of which humanity is capable.

Early readers of the book have been enthusiastic.  Dan Close writes this: “Cindy Ellen Hill, a brave new voice in contemporary poetry, has successfully combined the elegance and style of the classic sonnet with the themes and freshness of our contemporary natures. In doing so, she has written a wonderful book, worthy of national attention. Pick up a copy of this eloquent volume of twenty-six songs and listen to her sing of twilight, while the gold descends through amber, salmon, purple, ebony. . . Read each of these sonnets and revel in the thoughts they bring. David Weinstock adds: “Cindy Ellen Hill’s new book of poems, Wild Earth, explains why poets have been writing sonnets for over 800 years. For Hill, a sonnet, which she uses in a dozen variants, inspires and demands fresh ways to sing aloud of love, nature, humanity and divinity, and of vivid characters, from the poet herself to the cranky neighbor next door, from God and the gods to the endangered wild Earth
  wild earth cover image
  Painting by Katie Hoyt Carleton.

Cindy Hill is an environmental attorney, writer, musician, and obsessed gardener living in Middlebury, Vermont.  Her poetry has appeared in many publications and on National Public Radio.  Composing music developed her appreciation of rhyme and meter, and she now writes primarily formal poetry, particularly sonnets.

Click here for selections from the book.
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ISBN 978-1-943826-96-4
First edition, 2022
40 pages

Copies of this book can be ordered
from all bookstores including Amazon
and directly from the author:
Cindy Ellen Hill
144 Mead Lane
Middlebury, VT 05753.
Please send $12.00 per book
plus $4.00 for shipping in the U.S. and $6 beyond
by check payable to Cindy Ellen Hill.


copyright © 2022 by Cindy Ellen Hill




Ordinary Days


I awake and stretch, creaking with age;
no lover’s hand to stroke my folds of flesh,
no devoted soul whose prayers embrace
my body, name me beautiful and blessed.

There is only the cold dawn, and a note
saying the coffee’s on; yesterday’s bread
unwrapped beside the words my husband wrote,
and on the floor an unwound spool of thread

the cats have battered through the house all night,
a tangled drunkard’s path of passing years
meandering through beams of rosy light.
Picking up, my eyes grow hot with tears,

seeing through the early morning haze
the miracle of ordinary days.

Wild Earth


I dream in early darkness of a wild
earth, a land alive, a lithic hand to
hold my wild soul, sylvan pools that sing
of pregnant passion, maiden’s blush of rose
in meadow bare upon the morning’s breast.
Waking in the woodland glade I watch them,
watch the living, furred and flying, growing,
walking, soaring, stalking­—watch and wonder
willingly, while willing You to whisper;
waiting for a word of reason, for cause,

for season, what would be the start or end,
between works of creation and of men.
Drinking in the dawn’s breath I embrace them;
Unlike Adam, I refuse to name them.

April Is a Bully


April pries you loose from winter, kicks your fingers
off the icy ledge, forces you to look outside
as black-rutted frozen ground races to collide
with your too-soon-unbooted feet. Deep damp lingers.
Wind like the chill touch of a stalker sends shivers
down your spine. The shaking won’t stop; though you’ve tried
to light the stove, the wood sputters. You slide
the match head twice, it smokes and dies. Your hands quiver.

April is a bully wearing an oversized
coat. It lasts exactly thirty days, the same
as many other months. Yet it does seem longer.
Ignore it, and maybe it will just quit, chastised,
dwindle away to languid green, mumbling your name
as if naming your survivors makes you stronger.

Roots of the Rowan Seed

Rowan seedling sprouted in the crevice
of a rock, deep beneath a hemlock grove,
high upon a hill without a name.
I am rooting for the rowan; it is
in my Celtic blood, although I have
no right to impose species bigotry;
this is not my garden, not my place
to lay a wager on the seed, the stone,

the shade, which one of them shall long prevail,
and which of them shall simply fade away;
which of the earth’s endeavors shall see glory
far beyond the counting of my days.
Time never tells before the shadow fades
which monument shall stand, and which shall fail.

Silver Solstice


Pale sun slides low across the silver sky
and weakly spins a thread of silver light
to hold the force of day against the night,
the all-entombing darkness to defy.
Like mycorrhizal filaments through earth
or water pulsing up through bedrock fault,
Light lives, though buried deep within a vault,
like seeds that slumber, dreaming of rebirth.
Silver mist of dawn slips through the oak,
envelops twigs of ash and birch and beech.
Silver tendrils slip and wrap and reach,
bright majesty of morning to uncloak.
         Though darkness wields each facet of its art,
         it cannot tarnish joy within our heart.