Poems for slaughtered deer read


Robin Lysne went on a vision quest in the Point Reyes National Seashore about 20 years ago. She was wandering the hills, fasting and deciding if she should become a writer. Then, turning a corner, she saw seven white deer on a hillside. “I didn’t even know these deer were out here. I was so enchanted by them,” she said. “It was a turning point in my life because I did become a writer and a healer.” Ms. Lysne lived in Marin for many years but moved to Santa Cruz in 1997. A few years ago, when she was in graduate school, she learned from a professor that the fallow deer and another species had been wiped out. She was shocked and horrified, and began the research that eventually led to her new book, Poems for the Lost Deer. She read newspaper articles and talked to protestors, a park ranger and the sharpshooter responsible for the extermination. Some of poems are told from their perspectives, others from the voice of the deer themselves. “I hope it will be healing for people and I hope it will question National Park Service policy,” she said. “The park has this idea [it can] just draw a line and we will bring nature back to [a particular] time. It’s a completely ridiculous idea… The deer are living beings.” Though most of the deer are now gone, a few still linger, wearing radio collars, around Bear Valley. On Sunday, April 27, Ms. Lysne will read passages from her book, as well as from another she recently published about energy healing, at the Art by the Bay Weekend Gallery in Marshall, from 2 to 4 p.m.