Visiting Nauvoo
September 2001

“Visiting Nauvoo,” New Era, Sept. 2001, 27

Visiting Nauvoo

Nothing seemed real

until I saw the sturdy brick and

the creeping river

and felt the humid warmth on

my skin.

I turned at a stirring,

but tall grasses merely bowed to

each other,

and fresh fences peaked their way

across the swaying fields.

Then out of a sunny glint on

the water,

a town moved toward me.

The air thickened with voices

shouting, laughing,

whispers from youth, wisdom from


all bustled by me, hurrying, hurrying.

A muddy hound ran and sat at my feet,

thumped his tail once, twice,

then bounded along.

A horse whinnied at my ear, and

shading my eyes,

I looked up into the face of Hyrum.

He smiled and waved and turned his

impatient mount away.

A woman approached,

children circled about her like a

patchwork skirt,

and before I could speak,

Emma smiled, nodded, and

hurried on.

I moved toward the river, away from

the crowded street,

into tranquil shade of wizened


I saw a man sitting,

gazing across the land,

barely breathing.

And Joseph stood, dear Joseph,

and smiled and gripped my hand.

And I wept as their lives flooded

through me.

Art by Julie Harker

Photos by Bridget A. J. Keogh