Poetry corner: “The First Gift,”

“The First Gift,” by J.R. Libby

This poem honors the first large gift of land to the Hancock County Trustees of Public Reservations toward what would become Acadia National Park. Eliza Homans of Boston made the gift of about 140 acres, including parts of Champlain and the Beehive, in 1908.


Dorr has his mountain,

and Champlain his,

while Brunnows name

is etched across the precipice

Brewer, Mcfarland, Young

stand tall in the sun,

yet no peak

bears the name Homans.

From Anemone Cave

to Sand Beach

and the Beehive which

to the heavens reach

these are the gifts

Eliza Homans bestowed

upon you and me,

Great head was hers

as was Stage Cave

and high sea cliffs

where salty breezes lift

to hiking trails

millions have braved

she simply gave

it all away

never once asking

that her family name

mark some beach

or mountain peak,

her gift lay way

so that all might seek

the beauty of

this picturesque place

we call Acadia.


Eliza Homans –

remember the name,

for it was she that gave

the park its first gift,

from sunlit hills

to shinning sea

to the shores of

eternity – the wealth

of which we can not behold

in an hour or a day,

her gift included

one side of Champlain

and the glacial pond

known as the bowl,

not until after

she had passed away

did Dorr have a path

built to honor her name,

a short path

compared to most,

with a rock donut hole

and a granite passage way

that path is there

if you can find the way,

the start of which

is nearly hidden today

her first gift marked

the seed of a park

which grew over time

to what we have today

a park like none other

from gifts stitched together.

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