Wednesday, March 4, 2009

In Oregon

In Oregon
we have Portland: beautiful city named by tossing a coin
Salem: seat of government, named for peace
Astoria: cornering the Columbia and the Pacific
connected to those New York Astors
And we have Halfway between two points no one can remember
Eightmile, Thirtymile, Tenmile, Four Corners, Four Cabin Corner, Five Corners, Six Corners, Twelve Mile Corner
and little Imnaha, Idanha, and Illahee

We hear the chanting of the tribes that came before us in the drumbeat of their names:
Umpqua, Chiloquin, Yaquina, Chemawa, Chehalem, Tillamook, Nestucca, Wallowa, Neskowin, Clatskanie, Neahkanie, Umatilla, Estacada, Wapinitia, Indian Village

We know the glad arrival of our early pioneers: Garden Home, Cloverdale, Happy Hollow, Pleasant Valley, Happy Valley, Homestead, Shady Dell, Dew Valley, Edenbower, Fortune Branch, Grandview, Horseheaven, New Hope, Wonder, Sweet Home, Sublimity, Bridal Veil, Paradise, Promise

We have heard the sad tales of the hardships that they bore: Dry Creek, Needy, Wagontire, Starvation Heights, Burnt Woods

and the support they gave each other: Sisters, Brothers, Friend, Unity, Amity, Harmony Point

as the skies watered the earth: Dad's Creek, Cow Creek, Day's Creek, Beech Creek, Long Creek, Drift Creek, Trout Creek, Rock Creek, Beaver Creek, Clear Creek, Union Creek, Fall Creek, Wolf Creek, Myrtle Creek, Drain

as the land gave sustenance: Cornucopia, Cherryville, Timbergrove, Deer Island, Green Acres, Cranberry Corners, Plum Trees, Alfalfa, Elk Lake, Rice Hill, Fields, Applegate, Fruitdale, Dairy, Fruitvale, Crabtree, Fruitland, Gooseberry, Hopville, Grouse, Antelope, Cherry Heights, Cherry Grove, Timber, Cove Orchard, Wheatland

In Oregon, the dream is realized: Noon, Summit, Climax, Copper, Gold Beach, Sunset

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