Friday, October 31, 2014

Autumn Poetry -- Happy Halloween!

In the newest issue of Star*Line, the poetry magazine of the Science Fiction Poetry Association, contributing columnist Denise Dumars writes at the end of her piece: Write a formalist poem 
about autumn that does NOT mention falling leaves, bones, October/November holidays, Pumpkin Spice Frappuccino, or similar tropes. Oh, and it has to contain the color blue.

I do not use any of the list of words she has forbidden. And I succeeded in putting the color blue into it. But she did say no to "similar" autumn tropes. Well, I used the words: skeleton, moonlight, be it. And I don't write formal verse except for haiku and very very rare moments of rhyme so this is not a "formalist poem." But anyway, not one to pass up an autumn poetry challenge, here is what I came up with.

Happy Halloween!


I write to you
so many pages of mist
of winter suns
of sea foam

in this poem
are jars of dusk
and smoke
icicles in moonlight
shimmering skeletons

trees spill coins
at this edge of the year
this poem
alights in your eyes
all the silver days

I write to you of an older season
breathing its iron river-scent
of rain and lichen and chrome-blue stars
drunk on toadstool wine

this poem conjures
sweet long nights
phantoms of alabaster and lamplight
floating by
competing with the fog

of all the wind-dreamt evenings
I write to you
where the fields snap with frost
and the air’s voice
the coldest secrets of the dead