Posts Tagged ‘October’

Poetry Friday posts with Violet who is celebrating Canada’s Thanksgiving.


There are only a few signs that October is here.  The temperatures are still quite warm, but on my morning walks, the sun does not peek over the horizon until I am close to home.  The bald cypress trees in our backyard are turning brown.  And the grass is growing slower, so my mower (dear husband) can spread out the weeks between mows.

In the classroom, when the calendar changes, attention turns to the end of the month.  You know the day, Halloween!

I have subscribed to the Academy of American Poets newsletter “Teach this Poem.”  The lessons are just right for my gifted students. From this site, I introduced Robert Frost’s poem October this week.   We discussed the poem, the rhyme scheme, imagery, and new vocabulary.  We talked about odes and how an ode is like a praise poem to something ordinary.  Then we wrote our own poems, stealing words and ideas from Robert Frost.

I tried a golden shovel with my favorite line, “Enchant the land with amethyst. Slow! Slow!”

O, autumn, your winds Enchant
birds into song, the
sugarcane drapes the land
in swaying soldiers with
suits of green-gold amethyst
Step, step Slow!
Swish, swish, Slow!
Marching to harvest all.

–Margaret Simon, after Robert Frost “October”

Lani, a 6th grader, took a line from Robert Frost and built her own poem around it.

How do you know when fall is here?
When the leaves from towering branches
that loom over us fall into colorful
browngreen leaf piles to plunge into until
twilight makes its unveiling.

When you don’t have to set your
alarm-instead being woken by
The crows above the forests call.

When football starts and your bedtime
changes to fit the Monday, Tuesday,
Thursday, and Sunday games.

When you can wear a sweater
outside and cold fronts become
more persistent.

When the flu sets in and
the doctor is occupied.

When fuzzy socks come out of
the dark hole called
your sock drawer.

When summer clothes
go to Goodwill.

When you stuff your face
on Thanksgiving.

When the days are shorter and
the sunsets more memorable.

When you grieve when it’s over.

Lani, 6th grade

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Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for the Slice of Life Challenge.

Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for the Slice of Life Challenge.

Living on the bayou is a gift I don’t always remember to appreciate, but on Saturday, I announced to my husband, “It’s a gorgeous day. We have to go canoeing.”

For the first Saturday this month we had little to do. I sat outside on my deck, clean and inviting from the wedding we had a few short weeks ago, and watched my neighbors prepare for their daughter’s wedding reception. Tents and lights and tables and chairs were going up, and all I needed to do was watch. The lack of responsibility felt freeing.

Peeking through the grandmother oak to the wedding prep next door.

Peeking through the grandmother oak to the wedding prep next door.

Jeff quickly grabbed the paddles, life jackets, and a lunchbox of two beers, and launched the canoe. This canoe has a long history, close to 50 years. The Grumman. He and his brother bought it together when they were Boy Scouts competing in canoe races.

Jeff paddles the stern, the steering part.

Jeff paddles the stern, the steering part.

The bayou was slow and still, offering endless reflections. The air was a perfect 70+ degrees. I know that happiness is fleeting, but on this day in October, we grabbed hold of it, and spent some time savoring and celebrating the goodness.

Cypress tree reflection

Cypress tree reflection

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Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us the celebrate each week. Click over to her site Discover. Play. Build. to read more celebrations.

October bulletin board

October bulletin board

Have you ever played Boo with your school or neighborhood? It’s become a thing at our school every year, but as an itinerate teacher, I sometimes get left out. Not this year. We have an awesome secretary who wants everyone to be included, so this year she is organized. On only the third day of October, I was Booed! I got a bucket of fun things: a Halloween plastic cup with a straw, a pair of Jack-O-Lantern socks, some snacks, candy for the kids, and decorations for my bulletin board. (Notice the plastic spiders in the web.) It made my Friday happy. This weekend I will stop at the store to make my own basket of goodies for some secret teacher. Games like these boost morale and make a school a fun community.

While I was digging in the cabinet for fall decorations, I found a poem I wrote a few years ago. It expresses well my feelings of celebration today, with cooler air, tall sugarcane, leaves falling, and sastumas soon to ripen. I do love this time of year.


On my morning walk,
sun reflects on the path.
Leaves crackle as I step.
Scent of a far off fire–
a sure sign of fall.
Sugarcane sways,
Satsumas ripen,
Cypress needles litter the lawn.
Rain showers blow in and blow out,
softening and cooling the air.

I’m falling in love with October.
I open my doors to the chilly wind,
welcome the sound of scavenging squirrels,
and celebrate this new season.

–Margaret Simon, all rights reserved

See this on Cowbird:

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