Sunday, November 8, 2009



Breath is holding form now,
as the promise of sleep whispers
seductively in the cold fields.

Up on the hill, the wild pears
hide crystals of ice inside
their sweet white flesh -
as tendrils of pumpkin vines
lie in dark and delicate rot.

And weeds, that so carefully
multiplied themselves
in the heat, now shiver boney
and brown in the wind -
their rustling, a death rattle.

At the edge of the field,
high, in the interlaced
branches of a walnut tree,
a plague of gregarious grackles
marshal themselves.

They scold me - and scream
their disapproval of my
aimless wanderings.


jack sender said...

Those crackles want you
away from their compost.
They have plans
or ant to play in it.

jack sender said...

make that, "want to play in it."

trooping with crows said...

Mom, wow, that came a long way from the opening line that you told me the other night! Oh, gosh, where to start....
"dark and delicate rot" is so great, I really love the sounds of those words together. My fav stanza is the 3rd. It is SO well stated. It's like a plain stated truth written as poetry. The comparison to the death rattle-amazing and impressive! The reader can really "feel" this one.

Coffee With Clark said...

Brilliant, poetry, and Whitman to boot! Bravo for your artistry, and thanks!

Karen said...

Kaye, This is beautiful from beginning to end. "Breath is holding form now," - so visual, so true to the season - opens a beautiful examination of the season. There are so many images of beauty. I love both the second and third stanzas for different reasons. The second for its reminder of what is to come: "hide crystals of ice inside/their sweet white flesh-" and the "dark and delicate rot" and the third for the reminder of what has gone "multiplied themselves/in the heat, now shiver boney/and brown in the wind -". I also love the language of this piece - "gregarious grackles" who "scold me" are fantastic!

I love the feel of this - its nod to summer and recognition of the coming winter and your place in the scheme of things.

This is my favorite, right along with the one about the blue heron.

Annie said...

I enjoy this well-made poem for the imagery, word choice, and tone. I love your opening line: "Breath is holding form now...," and every stanza- how they interrelate,and form a whole picture, including the scolding grackles.

Anonymous said...

Those grackles don't do any better. Hell with them.

Seriously, you captured the feel of the land at this time of year so elegantly. Rich, rich work.

And you redesigned your site! Great to see the person-who-is-the-poet. :)

Vesper said...

Kaye, each line of this poem is of an incredible richness and beauty - late autumn, yes, it is all in your fantastic weaving... Beautiful, absolutely beautiful...

And this line I can repeat for the new look of your blog. I'm so happy to see you, my friend!

Julie said...

Hey, Kaye! It's so good to read your poetry. I have to agree with Karen about the "favorites," because this one's right at the top of my K. Lawson Gilbert list. The title is fantastic. And the weeds that "so carefully" multiplied themselves is striking. I like that unique turn of a phrase, instead of the usual idea of weeds multiplying haphazardly. Stanza two is possibly my favorite. I love the wild pears hiding ice crystals. What beautiful language. Five stars!

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Jack, you are, possibly, right on that account! They do love to pick through food scraps. Lol...Thanks for coming by!

Hey Riss, thanks so much. Yes, I guess it did...I only had the first three lines on Saturday. But, Sunday morning was really conducive to writing here! I was wandering around on the you imagined, as per our phone! The grackles just wanted me to go in so they could eat the crow's cakes I made for them! :) I appreciate all the good things you said about this poem. <3

Clark - It was so nice of you to stop in. Hope you will make this a regular stop on your rounds. Thanks a million for such a nice compliment on my work.

Karen - I had that first line rattling around in my brain for a few days. I live so closely with nature here - it easily affects me. Glad to know this ranks as a favorite. Thank you for pointing out favorite lines, too - it's nice to know what resonates with other poets. Many thanks, friend!

Hi Annie, I appreciate your kind comments, especially on word choice and tone. You know, those grackles are so well organized, that I just blow their minds! lol
Again, my thanks.

Jason - are probably right! But...they do fuss at me, at times, - raising a raucous. Thank you for your complimentary comments on the poem. I am sure this time of year inspires you, as well. Yes, I experimented a little with different colors here and added my photo. Thanks, Jason. ;)

Hi Vesper - I appreciate your enthusiasm , as always, my friend. Glad the images were familiar to you and resonated. And thank you for that very sweet remark about my new look. I felt it was time. ;)

Julie - like I said to Karen, I like to know what resonates with other poets - thanks! I really struggled with a title. I usually know the title immediately, so thanks for giving it recognition! Wowee - 5 stars - you made my night!

joaquin carvel said...

i, for one, am so, so thankful for your "aimless wanderings" - and the brilliant poetry they inspire.

i love this one too - the feel of cold and pause and the blurred line between early and late. like the whole world is drawing a breath, getting ready - marshalling like those grackles - giving us time to absorb it all. absolutely wonderful.

and i really like the redesign - like the poem, it feels ready to move forward. cool earrings to boot!

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Joaquin - And... I am thankful that you come here to read and share your excellent thoughts. Thanks for the incisive reflections here and the compliments pertaining to the new look for Old Mossy Moon. Gotta shake it up now and then. ;)

I'll tell Troop ya like 'em.

Gel said...

I adore the textural and kinetic qualities of your poetry. Would love to hear you read this.
(Also that new profile photo rocks!)

Sarah Hina said...

I'm almost as in love with the new look of your blog, as I am with this poem! Really, the new colors are so warm and inviting. And your photo is, too. Perfect, Kaye.

The first line alone is staggering here. But then it just gets better. I, too, love the image of that pear's juicy flesh crystallizing into ice, with only the dark rustle below them.

And the grackles were an ingenuous touch. The world is marshaling itself for winter. But we will continue to love, and wander.

Beautiful work that embodies November, my friend.

Margaret said...

I heard from so many people that they hate the month of November. They should all read your poem K.!

You're so close to nature. Every word of your poems comes across with so much perception. You even bring sensation into something as boring as weeds.

Everything about this poem is wonderful - from the photo to the title to every single stanza.

I just loved it!! And love your new blog look too. At last we get to see YOU. It's great to be able to put a face to your poetry K.

Anonymous said...

Oh man, such beautiful language... it just pops right off the page (or screen, in this case) at you.

Also, new picture of you! :)

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Gel - that is such a nice comment. Thanks! I always hope my words can move the reader in some way. Thanks for the compliment, too. ;)

Sarah - glad you like my remodeling. I am still thinking about more little changes, here and there. November always brings fresh muses. I try to capitalize on that. I appreciate your kind remarks and sensitive reflections, as always, dear friend.

Margaret, Thank you for those most generous and sincere words. I think every season has its own special worth. November has always been one of my favorite months. I did have some trouble titling this - glad it was so well received. Thanks - and yes, I decided to put up my mugshot! *0*

Hi Joseph - I like that... "pops"!!
As always, I value your opinion and appreciate your thoughts so much. haaha - yep, a new picture! Thanks a million.

Rick said...

Such a powerful and lovely work, K. With each passing poem you reveal a little more of your wondrously luminous talent.

RachelW said...

Yes, that's it! The dark and delicate rot-- I love that part. It drew my eye back to it. This all captured a feeling so perfectly, I found myself trying to hold it in as I read, along with my breath.

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Rick - you always flatter me - in the most sincere sense of the word - and I thank you for that. Your comment reminds me of something Walt said...I paraphrase - A poet's soul is revealed in each of his/her works. ;)

Rachel - I love when a poem seems to prompt similar feelings. If this one had a particular resonance with you, I am pleased. Thanks you, very much.

Vesper said...

Kaye, I knew you already had the Creative Blogger award but I just couldn't help giving you another one - I love your poetry and your blog too much! :-)
Have a beautiful weekend!

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Vesper, I am honored that you deem OMM worthy enough to receive a Creative Blogger Award. Thanks for being such a valued blogland friend. :)

Anonymous said...

Wonderful personification of the courtiers of autumn... the grackles are my favorite, I have to say. ^_^

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Joseph - I do like the grackles..they are so pretty in the sunlight. Like most black birds, they shimmer iridescent. Their yellow eyes are so expressive. Thanks!

Catvibe said...

Ah the turning... no one writes seasons the way you do my dear friend.