Tag Archives: OctPoWriMo


At the end of my wandering,
I wait with the golden leaves
For the autumn sky
to desire my flight.

Copyright Kay Winter

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Birch Light – reposting

Standing on the ridgeline
just above the golden quiver
of a birch wood,
We see, above the treeline,
a gray, stained sky approaching.

We throw our arms across
Autumn’s shoulders
As if to ask it
To tarry.

So that we can remain
this golden,
this splendid.

Copyright  Kay Winter

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Evening on the quiet bay,
A distant swirl of gulls
against the autumn woods.
Near me, a silent white moth
Flutters toward the balcony light.

Copyright Kay Winter

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At the mountain lodge
Gazing at the autumn sunset
A shared glance among
The blushing maples.

Copyright Kay Winter

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The Winter Woods: A Sestina

From my late afternoon window, I see the woods
in black, ragged lines in winter.
The trees of bare branches mourn the loss
of leaves. Deep within the woods is an encircling mist
Where the soft earth, softer for the leaves, awaits the rain
and the season of austerity and peace

And I too, seek the austerity of winter peace.
In the late afternoon, I long for the woods.
I wait for the passing of the cold and relentless rain
to walk out the small door into winter
into the curtain of the clearing’s remembering mist
The leaf-covered path sings a song of loss

The song of summer’s broken promise, a song of loss
But in my walking the dark shouldered trees offer peace
and quiet solace in the chill and veiling mist
My breath in quiet cloud breathes with the breath of the woods.
Each step forgives the loss, forgives the winter.
In the clearing, breathing within the mist, I await the return of the rain

The passing of the high clouds, gray and filled with rain
ease the well within me that murmurs of loss.
The brown leaves do not mourn the vanishing sun of winter
They fall as they must, in forgiveness and peace.
The afternoon falls into the swift dusk of the woods.
The first drops of rain fall against hands, fall through mist.

Memory lives in mist.
Mist, snow, sun, starlight, moonlight,clouds, rain
Bring lights of their own beauty into the woods
Remembered joy, endured pain, and mourned loss.
In memory offered as prayer, my spirit finds peace
like the wild, bare, and mysterious winter.

By my walking I move through winter,
Walking the earth’s soft floor, along paths of mist.
I leave wait in the woods for the fall of light to find peace
Though the swiftly moving clouds bring rain
I leave behind for that hour, the day’s demands, and honor loss
and the healing paths of winter woods.

The woods wait through winter’s loss
though mist and rain, to offer peace.

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Too Late for This Path

I am walking too late for this path,
but I could not turn away
from the harvest moon rising
across the field as wide
as the magic before me.

I should turn back,
but the frost is settling upon the grasses,
bent and patient.

– Copyright Kay Winter

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Maple Leaf

Alone in a quiet park
off a country road
I wait in the dusk
for a crimson maple leaf
to fall
into the dark river.

– Copyright Kay Winter

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Hat on a Madman

You were the hat on the madman
holding in the smoke thoughts
holding in the firecracker sparks

You were the hat on the madman
listening to the moonbeam siren
listening to the green spaceship summons

You were the hat on the madman
into sympathetic flames
of stellar love

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How Could We Know?

How could we know
that the severing hand would come at last
for her,
the last innocent among us.

How could we know
that by standing once
(when they said we should not)
singing once
(when they said we should not)
kneeling once
(when they said we should not)
that we would go this way

How could we know
that our defiance
made the passersby a part of the fight
whether they chose it or not?

How could we know
that the severing hand would come at last
for the final innocent among us?

How could we know
that we would hear them
nailing shut her door?

How could we know
we who planned nothing,
that when the light was gone,
when the moon was gone
that our dry hands, our bleeding fingers
would scramble into the wood
until the door was down
and we could take her back?

How could we know
that after that we were moving,
always moving,
through brown bracken fields at night
on forgotten roads in what had been
the heart of America
past relics of prosperity and hope and lies
in neon and weedy parking lots.

How could we know that
the last thing she would see
of freedom
would be the brown-edged petal
of a dying pink rose?

How could we know the enemy
had so many empty rooms waiting for us?

– Copyright Kay Winter

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