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Scott Ward
Professor of Literature and Creative Writing

Eckerd College
4200 54th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33711

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Creative Writing

Creative Writing

The Bats

They are always there in the dark
when I turn up the Old Mill Road,
dropping into the top of my beam for insects
swarming toward the light.

They have come oddly
from the rotted hollows of trees,
respiring caverns or flooded mines
in the river bluff,

like nothing else in the night.
When the sun grows large and sets,
the shape of their world
becomes sound, the flight

of the gray moth they call for
crackles in their ears
like grist breaking under the millstone.
The entire forest

is for them a congregation
of swaying tones, wavering, pine-shaped,
up to them. The mine shaft they seek
at dawn, fatigued

from night feeding, its entrance,
every turn and cranny, is a lulling
tune of comfort. They are always there
in the dark, proving ways

to move in the world
not exactly ours. Sometimes I could deliver
myself to every form of the night,
all of those clamoring songs,

switch off the headlights and drive
up the Old Mill Road, listening
to pine trees, housetops and chimneys, other
skidding shapes in the dark, hearing

my voice return in the shape of the world.

Copyright Scott Ward


Artistic Achievement Scholarships are available to creative writers. Interested students should follow the Creative Writing Award Submission Guidelines Located on the Financial Aid Home Page under Scholarships and Artistic Achievement Awards and mail all pertinent materials prior to the application deadline.

Writers in Paradise

Writers in Paradise

Located on the beautiful waterfront campus of Eckerd College, this writers' conference features professional writers at the top of their form spending time with motivated and talented participants who seek an intimate, unhurried climate for learning . . . in paradise.