The Poetry of Falling Leaves ...

I saw my breath on the trek across campus this morning, the first real sign that the best time of the year is upon us. The leaves have been changing, bit by bit, for a month now – more from lack of water than anything else, and now there's no lack of that. The slip and patter of droplets from leaf to ground; the plunk! of dislodged acorns and feather-fall of the leaves themselves is music to my over-heated ears. Come frost, and fleece, and wood smoke! Come, October!

Thought I'd share some old stuff to help share the autumnal spirit. I called them poems when I wrote them; a couple I even dubbed haiku, although they're titled and ... well, they're 17 syllables, 5-7-5, but little else. Call them what you like – I hope you enjoy them.

the hungry need
mornings like this –
the world no longer
black or white, but blue,
red-orange, gold and green,
deep purple, nutty brown
the trees like apples, stood
on their stems, some
like tomatos turning;
melon-ball maples, lemon
poplars, grape sumac –
crisp and abundant and
ripe for the picking

j. thorp
16 oct 02

monarch’s fall
in leaves almost lost
on swirling autumn breezes
the monarch tumbles

j. thorp
20 oct 00

bloodied by the fall
the sumac’s head drips red on
shards of shattered grass

j. thorp
(some frosty october
morning, circa 2001)

I'm working on what my friend might call a real poem – one with rhyme and meter and everything – based on our recent trip to the mountains. Maybe tomorrow ...

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