Friday, September 19, 2014

Poetry Friday -- Autumn

by Linda Pastan

I want to mention
summer ending
without meaning the death
of somebody loved

or even the death
of the trees.
Today in the market
I heard a mother say

Look at the pumpkins,
it's finally autumn!
And the child didn't think
of the death of her mother

which is due before her own
but tasted the sound
of the words on her clumsy tongue:
pumpkin; autumn.

Let the eye enlarge
with all it beholds.
I want to celebrate
color, how one red leaf

flickers like a match
held to a dry branch,
and the whole world goes up
in orange and gold.

Amy has the Poetry Friday Roundup at The Poem Farm. I'll be at the Ohio Casting for Recovery retreat all weekend, so I'll catch up with your posts (hopefully) at some point next week.

If you would like to make a donation to Casting for Recovery, Orvis is matching all donations until September 23. Secure donations can be made here. You can designate the Ohio retreat (or your state's retreat).

Happy Fall! Happy Friday! Happy Poetry!


  1. Gorgeous! I love the way Pastan talks about autumn as a time of discovery.

  2. I want to eat this poem...I love it so much. You, Mary Lee, always find the best ones. Thank you! May your trip be full of goodness. Happy Poetry Friday, friend!

  3. Mary Lee, what a beautiful offering as September transitions us into autumn. Ah! Summer ending is a sweet good by but now the whole world will go up in orange and gold. Go forth and do the good work of service that will make many hearts smile this weekend.

  4. Wow. This is so beautiful. Thanks for sharing it.

  5. LOVE the poem. Yes!

  6. Anonymous10:20 AM


    Have a beautiful weekend.

  7. Perfect poem to celebrate the season, Mary Lee!
    "the whole world goes up
    in orange and gold" - Indeed! = )

  8. Linda Pastan tells us to look in new ways every time. Thanks, Mary Lee!

  9. Linda Pastan is one of my favorite poets--Thank you for sharing this poem. The timing of its arrival today is just what I needed. I will share it with others.

    Mary Lee, I had a poet(ry)-related question-->Which poets do you have autographs for so far? I was looking for a way to find that information on your blog--I believe you've shared autographs before...Just curious.

    Hope you have a beautiful, fall retreat weekend!

  10. Appreciations for sharing "Autumn" by Linda Pastan, who is new to me so now I want to look her up.

  11. The love of words on the tongue and colors in the trees make this a special poem to read again and again. Thanks.

  12. Wow, that last stanza is glorious. Red, orange and gold are the gifts of fall - autumn eye candy!

  13. The wonder of autumn through a child's eyes (and not that of marketers with their pumpkin everything!). Bliss.

  14. I love this poem! I can see using it after I teach the symbolism of seasons for a good juxtaposition! LOVE the last stanza - gorgeous. I hope your weekend is blessed!

  15. Love Linda Pastan, and love the ending to this poem:

    "... one red leaf

    flickers like a match
    held to a dry branch,
    and the whole world goes up
    in orange and gold."

    It's starting here too. It's the trees' answer to "when I am old, I will wear purple"!

  16. Linda Pastan reminds me of Mary Oliver, in that they both always find ways to offer us warm-hearted gifts with their poetry. Lovely.


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