Monday, April 20, 2015

PO-EMotion -- Wonder


The name of the next street over 
hints at what our neighborhood was 
before there were houses and streets: 

The Red Oak in our front yard, 
her sisters the Burr Oak across the street, 
and the trio of Hickories in our neighbor's yard 
are all of a size that suggests they have been standing here 
for at least a century. 
Maybe longer. 
That they have survived the destruction of their habitat 
and adapted to urban living 
is a testament to their tenacity.

But the real miracle can be found 
at the base of our oak. 
On what was once the forest floor, 
(now an unmown ring around the base of the tree) 
sessile trillium, 
perhaps as old as the fragment of forest, 
emerges and blooms 
every spring.

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2015

Carol, at Carol's Corner, will join me again this year as often as possible.

Kimberley, at iWrite in Maine, is joining me this month. 
Kay, at A Journey Through the Pages, is joining, too!

Steve, at inside the dog, is sharing his poems 
in the comments at Poetrepository.

Heidi, at my juicy little universe, will join us when she can.

Linda, at TeacherDance, will join as often as she can.
Check the comments at A Year of Reading or Poetrepository for her poems.

Kevin (Kevin's Meandering Mind) is back this year,
leaving poetry trax in the comments.

Carol, at Beyond Literacy Link, is writing alongside us when she can.
She celebrates bloggers' voice.

Jone, at DeoWriter, is doing a "double L" challenge. 
She and I are cross-poLLinating our challenges whenever possible.
Jone's word today is TRILLIUM.


  1. So I got about halfway through my comment and it disappeared. Not sure if I hit publish or ???

    First, thanks for hosting the NCTE chat last night. What a fabulous group of people. And a bajillion ideas flying around. I need to go back and read the transcript because there was a lot of great stuff.

    And now your poem for today. Another gorgeous offering. I love the stanza and line breaks on this one, that start with that last line of the first stanza. Wow! And then all the specific details- red oak, burr oak, hickory. "A testament to their tenacity." And then you take us to the base of those trees. And manage to work in an ll word besides! Jeez Louise! You are one amazing poet and when you publish your first book, I will be right there to buy a copy and of course you will have to autograph it.

    I'm in with two today.

  2. How beautiful. I love the names--burr oak, red oak, hickory, sessile trillium, and "fragment of forest." And I love how plants are on a different time scale from we humans.

  3. Love this Mary Lee--both the poems and the fact that you have long-lived trillium at the base of your oak! I have been planting wildflowers where the grass won't grow for several years, but the trillium (tiny seedlings taken from a friend) have yet to bloom.

  4. Your science-y writing is always my favorite. This one makes me want to look in my own yard to wonder about its history.

  5. We are enjoying trillium blooms in our neck of the woods, too. I love how your poem captures the resilience of the forest. I almost wrote about planting chestnut trees for today's wonder. Maybe the seedlings we planted will replace the giant trees that have all but disappeared.

  6. Love your phrases, testament to their tenacity and as old as the fragment of forest. Such a lovely poem and thanks for the picture.

  7. Mary Lee, the alliteration in your poem is wonderful. I especially like, is a testament to their tenacity. Tenacity is a strong word. Nature is a wonder. I am a day late in my poem but you can find it at


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