Friday, October 21, 2016

More Autumn Poems


Sky full of autumn
earth like crystal
news arrives from a long way off following one wild goose.
The fragrance gone from the ten foot lotus
by the Heavenly Well.
Beech leaves
fall through the night onto the cold river,
fireflies drift by the bamboo fence.
Summer clothes are too thin.
Suddenly the distant flute stops
and I stand a long time waiting.
Where is Paradise
so that I can mount the phoenix and fly there?
          Ngo Chi Lan, Vietnamese, 15th Century
from Art and Nature.

Here's a cheerful view of autumnal themes by Emily Bronte

Fall, Leaves, Fall

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day;
Every leaf speaks bliss to me
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
I shall smile when wreaths of snow
Blossom where the rose should grow;
I shall sing when night's decay
Ushers in a drearier day.
                 -- Emily Bronte --
from Art and Nature:  An Illustrated Anthology of Nature Poetry



Now constantly there is the sound,
quieter than rain,
of the leaves falling.

Under their loosening bright  
gold, the sycamore limbs
bleach whiter.

Now the only flowers
are beeweed and aster, spray
of their white and lavender
over the brown leaves.

The calling of the crow sounds
loud--a landmark--now
that the life of summer falls
silent, and the nights grow.
-- Wendell Berry --
from A Year in Poetry
Thomas E. Foster & Elizabeth C. Guthrie, eds.

By the Open Window

     In the calm of the autumn night
     I sit by the open window
     For whole hours in perfect
     Delightful quietness.
     The light rain of leaves falls.
     The sigh of the corruptible world
     Echoes in my corruptible nature.
But it is a sweet sigh, it soars as a prayer.
     My window opens up a world
     Unknown.  A source of ineffable,
     Perfumed memories is offered me;
     Wings beat at my window--
Refreshing autumnal spirits
     Come unto me and encircle me
     And they speak with me in their innocence.
     I feel indistinct, far-reaching hopes
     And in the venerable silence
Of creation, my ears hear melodies,
     They hear crystalline, mystical
     Music from the chorus of the stars.

-- C. F. Cavafy--
from  Art & Nature:  An Illustrated Anthology of Nature Poetry    


I hope you find one of these to your liking. 



  1. i thought this had a vague autumn feel about it:

    in scrimmages (fractions of diamond dust).
    thousands of frogs surge forth.
    the jinta shrieks and reaches climax.
    in air.
    snake fireworks begin to run.
    ten thousand firework snakes.
    shooshoopoon shooshooshoosh confusion.
    from the top of the peaked mountain.
    booo-wham big cascading fireworks.
    casting out nets.

    (jinta: a type of tinny chinese music)

    -shimpei kusano, "asking myself/answering myself", p. 27

    1. Mudpuddle,

      Autumn? Doesn't strike me that way. All those creatures suddenly bursting forth and the music remind me a bit of New Year's Day or of spring.

  2. the poem kind of refers back to our experiences during the late hurricane...

    1. Mudpuddle,

      OK, the rush of activity, the noises, the animals fleeing the storm . . .

  3. I really like By the Open Window, Fred. Thanks for introducing me to it. Cavafy is a new name for me (not that I'm that up on poets).

    1. madamevauquer,

      Cavafy is a Greek poet (1863-1933). I know about him only because I'm a great admirer of Lawrence Durrell, who is an admirer of Cavafy. Cavafy frequently shows up in Durrell's fiction, poetry, and travelogues. If it weren't for Durrell, I most likely would never have heard of Cavafy.