Kim Gurnee

Today I discovered Kim Gurnee, who taught at College of the Canyons, passed away in 2017. I’m so sorry for it. She was an incredible woman and I’m sorry there’s so little to find about her online. Where are the obituaries? Where are the words of sorrow? So. This poem. Rough, but here.

Kim Gurnee

The silvery woman is gone.
Her wide smile, her generous eyes,
her elf-land bones. Gilt threads in her hair,
dawn-quiet and pale, she had a way
of cupping a moment, just so —
as if it was alive
and loved. As if — I can see her, even now
smiling — she took no measure of time
for granted, as if — I can see her,
intent on a speaker, or language,
the weaving of words —
she might learn warp and weft, rise and fall,
what passes unsaid and
what is told. As if — oh, I can see
her kindly speaking an observation
that would crack open the sky —
she was infused, a cordial,
a charm, a heady elixir. As if, kindly radiant,
she could give the moment to you,
thank you for it. I can see her, absorbed
in a poem. Remember her,
in this poem. The silvery woman
is gone. Her wide smile,
her generous.

2 thoughts on “Kim Gurnee

  1. This is so beautiful…I also wonder where is her information…I cannot find anything online. Kim Gurnee was my best friend…I knew her when I was little….she was so wonderful…..I really miss her so much…did you Take her classes at college of the canyon? I can imagine she was an awesome professor! Hope you can tell me more about her please …thank you very much!


    1. Hi, Joyce! I’m sorry that it’s taken me almost a year to notice your comment and get back to you. Yes, I did take her classes at College of the Canyons, and she was absolutely wonderful, just really kind and attentive, with this way of listening that made you feel really heard. I learned information about her passing by calling, and then a little more from another professor. I’m sure she still has colleagues there who remember and can tell you more; I would love to hear anything you have to share about her, too.


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