jillypoet: mom trying to write

Each day I wish I had invented waterproof sticky notes (for shower inspiration) or pen-friendly diapers to get down all my quirky thoughts that I am sure are relevant and publishable. And so God (actually another writer-mommy) sent me The Blog.

Monday, September 18, 2006

How to Mary Oliver the Trees

One red maple tree
stands alone among late green.
It's good to be you.

Gray lake in autumn,
seven white sailboats drift past.
Silent floating ghosts.

Three gray squirrels fight;
an acorn, a girl, a nest?
one red leaf stops them.

Morning comes darker,
children sleep later, rise well.
Summer's heat is gone.

This week's http://www.onedeepbreath.blogspot.com prompt is autumn haiku. Such an important season, such portent, such pressure to capture it just perfectly, as perfect as autumn is!

I love autumn. It is by far, my favorite season. September always feels like a new year, like a new chance to make a fresh start. In my college days it was the clean notebooks, new highlighters, sharp tipped pencils, the smell of brand new textbooks (I would spend the $70 for a new book, rather than $25 for used, just to have that smell), the assigments I knew I'd get done on time, and, as an art student, the new, pointy tipped crayolas (of course I didn't need them for class, I just couldn't resist!) that I loved! Now, I still love looking at shiny notebooks and folders in stores. I was so excited to go school supply shopping for my son. I don't know how a kindergartner will ever use 27 multi-colored folders and 15 one-subject notebooks, but hey, it was fun!

Fall. Then there's the trees. And the leaves. And the smells. Growing up in the Adirondacks, I practically lived haiku. That is in retrospect, of course. As a teen, it was the maroon and gold of haircolor, lipstick and sweaters that I was concerned with, not the leaves. But now...but now. Now, the trees on the highway leading north, home to the mountains, leave me wanting. Wanting to capture their colors in word and sound. For those of you who know the poet Mary Oliver's work, you may relate: I want to Mary Oliver them!

Oh, the pressure. I hope I did autumn justice. Thanks for reading.


Blogger Becca said...

I think you definitely did autumn (and Mary Oliver!) justice! I loved "silent floating ghosts," and "morning comes darker." Very lovely haiku!

BTW, I'm a school supply junkie too! It broke my heart that my son could care less about notebooks, folders, and pens! Also good to know I'm not the only "book sniffer" out there!

In your comment on my post you asked about posting pictures. There is a little picture icon on the dashboard of Blogger (what you see when you're writing your post) - if you click on it, it brings up a window where you can insert a picture from you picture files on the computer, or off the internet. It took me a little while to get the hang of it, but it usually works now.

3:41 PM  
Blogger Tammy said...

These were fantastic! Too many great lines to mention...WOW. Cheers to Mary for inspiring you :)

8:24 PM  
Blogger Catherine said...

The sailboats are lovely. autumn doesn't mean school starting, to me. In New Zealand we start school at the beginning of February, which is really still summer - in fact we always say the best weather comes after school starts! (Murphy's law). The autumn colours don't really come till April, which would be October in the northern hemisphere, and I grew up in Wellington, which is not big on deciduous trees, anyway. But in Christchurch (you asked where I am), we do get beautiful autumn colours.

10:32 PM  
Anonymous January said...

Oh yes, Autumn and Oliver would be proud.

"Growing up in the Adirondacks, I practically lived haiku." Nice!

11:50 PM  
Blogger susanlavonne said...

(a repeat of my email but for public reading :-)
I was reading several of Mary Oliver's poems just before reading yours and YES! you more than did her justice!

Especially with lines like "silent floating ghosts." Wonderful haiku.

10:11 AM  
Blogger michelle said...

Beautiful. Especially this image.

"Silent floating ghosts."

12:32 PM  
Blogger LuluBunny said...


12:42 PM  
Blogger Crafty Green Poet said...

Lovely images and photo.

2:58 PM  
Blogger Jodi said...

I think you more than did autumn justice. I love your squirrel poem, as I have several in my yard year round that entertain me (and taunt my dogs).

3:28 PM  
Blogger jayne d'Arcy said...

Hi! I saw your blog in my incoming links on my blog and am so glad I did. I enjoyed this and your sonnet for your son, too. I'd like to invite you to my writing site: http://3rdeyewriters.com/drupal. Also, I'm publishing writing on the 24th that has to do with fond memories, so if you'd like to submit something, please do!

3:50 PM  
Blogger Clare said...

"silent flaoting ghosts"

I love it.

4:07 PM  
Blogger ecm said...

I love your title as I love Mary Oliver. Perfect title. You've made Mary Oliver a verb!

11:47 PM  
Anonymous Sandy said...

You maryolivered very well! I love these.

6:46 AM  

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