CREDIT: New Yorker cartoon by David Pascal, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Prints for sale at


For a real-life farmers market poetry vendor, check out this feature at (article and video) about Meredith Clark, a Seattle-area author who writes poems for customers on the spot — for free on a manual typewriter. (Photo of Meredith Clark by Zachary D. Lyons, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED)


by Meredith Clark

Garlic, too, works
through the weather,
builds roots that way,
grows taller, never falters.
It, too, shows up
with earth in its skin,
braids tightly together
the land and those
who live it. Both
leave bright traces,
some sharp, clean taste
on all the hands
they touch. Both make
from the inside out
their own new scape.

“For Arlene” was commissioned by Ballard Farmers Market from Meredith Clark of the Poem Store in loving memory of Arlene Dabrusca of Anselmo Farms.