Harold Vinal was born in Vinalhaven to George and Evie Lane Vinal. Until he was 30 years old he was widely known as a pianist and teacher. Having an epiphany, he experienced, "a second and mystical birth." He became a poet and subsequently founded, Voices, a long distinguished magazine of poetry. Vinal later became secretary of the Poet Society of America and a member of the Craftsman Group. Many of his poems are about the sea and Vinalhaven. Perhaps his most famous poem (at least locally), is Hurricane, a long narrative poem about the then abandoned granite quarry on nearby Hurricane Island. Vinal lived in a house on Lane's Island known as the Moors. Upon retirement he moved to a house on Roun the Mountain Road. He died at age 73 in a his beloved island home.
"I saw a star flame in the sky, I heard a wild bird sing, and down where all the forest stirred, another answering. All suddenly I felt the gleam that made my heart revive: Ah, God, it take such simple things to keep the soul alive." -Harold Vinal