John Kellogg Dickinson - 12 August 1918 to 15 February 2010

John Dickinson December 2009  

Reflections on Halibut Point
ca. 1955

Here in these depths
what secrets kept
of lives and rocky deaths?

Jumping, white sprinkled
the ocean beyond
is more honest than the quarry pond
more open in its moods and yet
forgets more swallowed lives
than quarries reckon up with pride
to their pretentious menace.
Quarries kill children
or passively respond
to some despondent will.

The sea fights men
who, fighting, bring
to bear their strength
to tear from sea a life
it never misses.

Quarries have a right to kill
the men who made them,
if you will.
The sea slays without excuse,
its justice wild and confused,
to make amends with days of rolling sweetness,
pellucid solitude,
solicitude for all upon it,
next victims and escaped antagonists.

The sea is history
the abandoned quarry, god.

John K Dickinson

In memoriam

John Kellogg Dickinson

12 August 1918 - 15 February 2010


42° 22' 3.8" N 71° 8' 36.3" W


O tönet fort, ihr süssen Himmelslieder!
Die Träne quillt, die Erde hat mich wieder!

Sound on, oh hymns of heaven, sweet and mild!
My tears are flowing; earth take back your child!

J. W. v. Goethe, Faust Part I, Scene 1.

John Dickinson, 1950s or earlier
Peter Cook - graveside 1    
Peter Cook - graveside 3    
Peter Cook - graveside 5    
photos by TAD 9-Jan-2010 and Peter Cook 19-Feb-2010