How I Grabbed My Poetry Career by the Horns

I’m honored that my first poem ever to be published — “In the Flat Field” — is in The High Desert Journal. Based in Bend, Oregon, it’s a fabulous regional publication that showcases writing rooted in the Interior West of North America.

I’ve never met this cow; she lives (or at least posed for) the photo in the Swiss Alps. The public domain photo was taken by Daniel Schwen and was a Finalist for Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year 2007: a fine tribute to cows worldwide.

But I’ve been laughing as much as gloating. You see, this very first poem of mine to be published is about cows.

Yes, cows. I’ve launched myself into poetic publication with a bovine poem.

I wonder: would it have been better to begin with love? Angst? Flowers?  Will cow poetry become a new genre?  Will I ever overcome this initial branding?

Or publish another poem?

Stay tuned, but meanwhile mosey on over to read “In the Flat Field” online and explore other offerings in The High Desert Journal.

UPDATE: The High Desert Journal no longer archives online publications (kind of odd, I think), so this poem is no longer online. I do have a poem published in a print issue of The High Desert Journal, which also mentions cows, so I guess I can still claim my poetry career began with both that journal and cows.


  1. Congratulations! And it’s a delightful piece. Very moo-ving.

  2. Moo-ving: good one. Thanks, Jason.

  3. I love this poem. I think it’s a fabulous first.

  4. I appreciate your encouragement, Deb. And thanks again for the prompt that inspired the poem.

  5. one who has no writing talent, I would be thrilled to be able to write a poem about cows let alone get one published..Seeing that cow made me think back to the visits we had to a cousin’s dairy farm..great fun for kids..hay and poop, what more does a kid need…Michelle

  6. Thanks, Michelle. I’m actually quite pleased to begin with such a quirky poem. The older I get, the more I enjoy embracing eccentricity. And yes, it is a beautiful cow photo. I might like my own dairy cow someday.

    Now about that writing talent — it seems as though you are writing a lot on your blog about things you’re passionate about. And have an enthusiastic following. I’d call that writing talent. Keep it up.

  7. Liz, what a great practice–pondering a cow’s view of the world! Congrats on the poem, and I hope many more poems follow.

  8. Thanks, Priscilla. I started writing poetry last April and am enjoying it more than I ever imagined.

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