Poem of the Week–Atlas



The first one I actually saw was
In bronze standing in front of Rockefeller Center
The others are pictures in books – flat and one dimensional
Of course, they are all men
Brawny, muscle bound men
Usually holding the world on their backs or shoulders
Usually looking down, weary
Ready to be done with their burden
Ready to drop us
At any minute
But I believe
Is a woman
Who stands tall and lithe
With balanced baskets of fruit or produce
kindling or water for her family
As she walks home from the marketplace, field or well
Proudly with grace
Eyes looking straight ahead as she takes each confident step
Into the future.
With the world truly on her head.

Susan Bassler Pickford
Member-at-large, ME


  1. Gladys Gasparino says:

    I love the poems of Susan Bassler Pickford. She has a wonderful talent of starting off her poem in one direction but ending up in an entirly different direction. She is reservedly thoughtful and seems to uncover those feelings that we all harbor deep down inside of ourselves. Keep writing, Susan! I am a fan!

    • NLAPW says:

      I agree! Good insights on what makes Susan’s poetry so good. As an editor, I do look for poems that take every day or simple observations and then relate them to some greater truth. Good lesson for my own writing, too!

  2. Nancy Haskett says:

    What a beautiful poem! I love the strength it gives to women, and it reminds me of one of my all-time favorite poems which is about an African woman walking with a basket on her head. Unfortunately, I don’t know the title of that particular poem, but this is truly lovely. Great job!

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