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Heavy upon My Eye

Reading Carolyn Kizer's "The Great Blue Heron" As My Mother is Leaving

It is hard to tell whether Carolyn Kizer’s “The Great Blue Heron,” one of her more mysterious and sad poems, is an elegy for a person or a landscape. Or for both at once. In the region of Scotland where my mother’s family originated, as in cultures throughout the world, particular hills and caves embody…