Visions of Autumn ((Trapped))

Shade of a palm tree’s sun-shadowed reflections trapped in a frame on white-washed particle board opposite a French door,

Brown shrouded priestly vestments lipping over a sinewy, sun-leathered wrist guarding wrinkled fingers wrapped around a chalice,
No, a coffee mug:

Snowy cold memorials of seasons
On a mountain village garden path

A brown leaf rests atop a tiny river-stone:
Surviving remnant of
Autumnal verity from yesteryear

A weasel’s fur stuck in road-side thistle stands out amongst the crowd

Butterflies swoon, yellow blossoms lift Golden halos drop
Smoke smells whisper
Waiting, waiting, waiting for

Blueberries plump
Ready to be culled

As frozen memories take a beating
while reading colossal Plath on a Sunday mourning’s after noon.

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, November, 2017



Terrazzo and terre cuite:
the feelings so similar they provoke,
Synesthesia dismissed and folded into the feelings of being a deciduous leaf

Folded into the cement-lined polished glass
Magnificent colours of autumn
Scenes from wintering greys and ocherous browns on the way

Lost on the nature paths of a park northeast of the Hague
Imagining Van Gogh and Sien in the dunes of Scheveningen

Painting symbols of death or death Retreating:
In seasons of change
Sand blown into the paint

Those challenged descriptions
Make the poet want to spend the day
Folded into the tiny fragments of memory
Lost and found staring at the floor.

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, October 25, 2017



A Hallowed Eve

Season change absent
Of brilliant
Yellows, reds and oranges
And felt only by the truly sentient.

Poetic, prophetic, soothsaying naysayers
Phantom’s breath, spider’s webs and
Jack O’ Lanterns out of turnips,
Smoke from a candle flame whispering out the invitation to
A bewitching night of darkness.

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, October 31, 2016

Ode to Autumn

Hints of Autumn’s grace
Blowing in on
Matthew’s trace

As I sit beneath Sir Hawk
Who’s just landed in the old laurel tree,
Summer’s last breath’s canopy

Cricket sounds quickly replace
The cicada songs of summer
As dusk rolls in without subtlety

Looking west at setting sun
Making prayers for fullness of Autumn’s grace
To whisper in upon the whooshing remnant winds of Sir Matthew

Relief such as brought
By the verdant grass of Whitman,
A psalm to lift this sentient September soul
From the humidity it rests in.

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, October, 2016

Frog Sounds

(For Jenna)

Mr. Frog of amphibious verdant green
Ribbit ting, Ribbit ting
Ting, ting, Ting
With delight
Over the hurricane wet grass,
How do you do?, I said,
Ribbit ting, Ribbit ting
Ting, ting, Ting
To my new little green friend.

Very fine,
He quickly answered
In a most affable voice,
Almost as if speaking in his native tongue,
How do you do?

And I went back inside
To wait for the storm within my head
To clear
To match the blue skies opening overhead
And the drier air sweeping in,
With its hints of Autumn’s grace,
Ting, ting, Ting
Three days later
Still echoing
Through the walls of this old house.

Handcrafted poetry by John M. Hines, October, 2016

Single Leaf Survivor

This single leaf survived

The cold of winter

And water’s snowy melt of Spring.


To impress upon our lazy hiker,

The import of permutations on the way,

Amidst the continuity of life’s seasons of change.


Could he be this leaf? A Survivor,

A Creator and leaver of a legacy,

Not yet understood.


Leaving each day up to its own reveal,

In time’s good measure.

Handcrafted poetry by John Hines, 01/11/2016.

In March, 2014, I spotted a single, large autumnal colored leaf in the road amidst the shell rock on a western North Carolina mountain walk.  A spring snow had just melted. I was really beginning to feel the nature around me and starting to pause to notice and feel (with more than my senses) things like dewy spider webs, lonesome leaves, moss growing on a log, sun thrown shadows through the trees, and water moving over rock.

Reading today’s “Poem-a-Day” titled Thin Ice by Ellen Dore Watson brought the image of that leaf swiftly back to me.  I found the picture of that single leaf survivor that I had saved in my phone and kept it open while I started writing this short poem.  Thank you to Ellen Dore Watson for bringing back the image and feelings so readily.