Friday, October 12, 2018

Autumn Cadenza

Unsplash photo by NordWood Themes

Autumn Cadenza

Oak leaves drift down, a brown rustle.
Crickets are hushed.
Only sound --
plop --
acorns bonk roof.
Winter is here
when they

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2018

This poem is a Zeno, a form invented by J. Patrick Lewis. It has 10 lines with a syllable count that goes 8, 4, 2, 1, 4, 2, 1, 4, 2, 1. The single syllable words rhyme.


  1. I've been seeing the oak leaves (and acorns) falling around here, too. The oak that leans over the roof has been dropping them for weeks onto the metal roof.
    Unexpected and delightful!

    I wasn't aware of the Zeno form. I'll have to try it. I'm curious: When do you go to a form vs. free verse? Do they help you get unstuck? What have you learned by writing to forms? (If this question intruded too much on your process, please don't respond!!)

    Winter is looking closer with each passing day. I do love November...

    1. In this case, a form helped me get unstuck. I wanted to write about the acorns falling, I found my rhyming words, and the poem flowed from there.

      My creativity is getting buried these days. Nothing new. It always happens at this time of the school year (+NCTE). I'm trying to find small moments to let Creativity breathe so She stays alive underneath a heavy layer of Life Stuff!