I love New Haven….it’s an amazing city. Historic, cultural, sometimes gritty, filled with talented people. This is my winning ode to my adopted town. “This Haven” appeared in the New Haven Review

thThis Haven

Back when the river was lush with oyster,

long before the Hector rounded the point,

the first tribes understood the sanctity of promise.

Through season and tide, through harvest and flood,

who knows how many oaths have been sworn or shattered

between the red rocks of this land?

Think of the Sachem giving his nod,

scratching his mark on the line next to Eaton’s,

expecting that strangers would honor their word.

Think of a colony anchored at the Meeting House,

planting its hopes on nine new squares,

trusting that the Maker would always provide.

Here, to this haven, dredged deep by courage,

came scholar and merchant, mutineer and protector.

Here, to this sanctuary, carved rich by immigrant,

came artisan and craftsman, inventor and muse.

In time, the fame of the village rippled beyond harbor.

In time, a city grew, mosaic-shaped and celebrated.

Who knows, tomorrow, what promises will be seeded

in this still new shelter

where each generation’s covenant lies entwined with the next,

broken and frayed, perfected and whole?


Published by

Gabriella Brand

Gabriella Brand is a writer, adventurer, and educational consultant. She can't stop teaching and learning foreign languages. She would like to walk on all the continents (three more to go!). Her husband is extremely patient and her children are, fortunately, all grown up.

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