Wild Stillness

Wild Stillness

There is no conversation to be had
between us, no common ground
that would satisfy either of us,
you standing tall on a tree
extending from the water,
fresh catch lying at your feet,
while I paddle slowly past
not thirty feet away looking
for some recognition in the eye
that follows me as your head turns,
some appreciation for sunlight
glinting from the water or the breeze
that lightly ruffles your feathers
yet soothes on this midsummer day,
but you bend to retrieve your meal
and tilt your head back to shake it
down your throat as I paddle out of sight.

This is my response to earthweal weekly challenge: WILD STILLNESS.
~ click image for larger view in new tab ~

Always in Our Hearts ~ haibun

Always in Our Hearts

Though some would call it midsummer, it’s just three days past solstice, and here we are celebrating the start of summer with a wedding on the shore of Lake Erie. There is as much poetry in the lighthouse towering above us, framed by beautiful blue skies as it waits to send to the world a signal of the joy that fills our hearts, and in the sound of the waves beckoning us as they have over the years, as there is in the vows that we share, the words that are spoken. Afterwards, there are words more solemn, spoken of our love for you and our sadness at your passing before you could be a vital part of this joyful day. We can feel your presence, as I know we will when we celebrate this day in the coming years.

great blue heron lands
watches from the shore
always in our hearts

This is my response to Haibun Monday 5-23-22: Summer,
the prompt from Frank Tassone at dVerse ~ Poets Pub.

Our wedding, a self-uniting ceremony held at the Presque Isle Lighthouse in Erie, Pennsylvania, was in June 2017. The ceremony consisted of poetry that I wrote for the vows, as well as for readings by my children and my granddaughter. A very dear friend was going to “walk the bride down the aisle,” but, sadly, that was not to be, as he passed away four months earlier. When we celebrate that day, we think of him as he was when times were good.

Unrelated to the prompt, I wrote this following his passing:
Message from a Death Metal God
I think of the great blue heron as his spirit animal.

The Water Meets My Needs ~ mirrored refrain

The Water Meets My Needs

A leaf drifts slowly past me,
going where the current leads.
As my paddle meets the water,
the water meets my needs.

Each time, there’s something new
to experience, discover.
The water meets my needs
as my paddle meets the water.

From heron standing on the shore
to ducks concealed in bankside reeds.
As my paddle meets the water,
the water meets my needs.

Many rewards can be found
in each scene I encounter.
The water meets my needs
as my paddle meets the water.


This poem is my response to Poetry Form: Mirrored Refrain, the prompt from Grace at dVerse ~ Poets Pub. A mirrored refrain is formed by three or more quatrains where two lines within the quatrain are the “mirrored refrain” or alternating refrain.

 The rhyme scheme is as follows: xaBA, xbAB, xaBA, xbAB, etc.. (x represents the only lines that do not rhyme within the poem. A and B represent the refrain.)

finding new species ~ tanka

finding new species
traveling while painting birds
heron on the shore
captured for posterity
life’s work of nature lover

This tanka is my response to the prompt for NaPoWriMo,net Day 24, which is to write a poem inspired by a reference book. I seem to be in a Great Blue Heron groove lately, so I pulled out my priceless copy of John J. Audubon’s Birds of America (Don’t I wish!) and turned to Plate 211 to view Audubon’s painting and read his description of this magnificent bird.

Image source: audubon.org



Graceful Exit ~ quadrille


Graceful Exit

A quick glance my way,
the only sudden movement
in this stop action scene,
and the heron’s neck moves
forward, its legs bending
to launch that tall frame
as wide wings spread wider
in seemingly slow motion,
rising and falling in a graceful exit.

This is my response to Quadrille #78: Rise, the prompt from Merril at dVerse, which is to use any form of the word rise in a quadrille, a 44-word poem that does not require meter or rhyme.

(click any image to open larger view in new tab)



heron spied on shore ~ haiku video

heron spied on shore
silver flash in bill, then gone
river rushes by

This haiku is in response to the prompt for NaPoWriMo.net Day 23, which is to write a poem about an animal.

Image: Great Blue Heron in the Niagara River Gorge, 09 September 2008
(click image for larger view in new tab)

The camera I used for the photo was a small Canon. It also took video, and I actually captured the heron catching a fish. I had been using the camera to upload to YouTube for two years. The video was a small format (320×240) and it was in flash video, so that was the format I uploaded. I found that file today and used a clip to create an mp4 video in 640×480 (thus a slight blurriness) for this video poem.



Traveling at Night

Traveling at Night

(Clicking on each photo will open a tab with a larger view.)

Traveling at Night_1

Traveling at Night_2

The Peace Bridge between Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada & Buffalo, NY, USA (l.to r.)

Traveling at Night_3

For all the times I’ve photographed this bridge at night, I think these are the first with fog.

Traveling at Night_4

Below the Peace Bridge

Traveling at Night_5

Great Blue Heron below the Peace bridge

Traveling at Night_6

Canada Goose in the Black Rock Canal, Buffalo, NY

Ken G.