Thursday, October 16, 2014

Poetry Friday

     My 5th and 6th graders took a look at a poem by Bliss Carman, a Canadian poet, from Poetry for Young People: The Seasons.  It is a poem about autumn called "A Vagabond Song":

There is something in the autumn that is native to my blood -- 
Touch of manner, hint of mood; 
And my heart is like a rhyme, 
With the yellow and the purple and the crimson keeping time. 

The scarlet of the maples can shake me like a cry 
Of bugles going by. 
And my lonely spirit thrills 
To see the frosty asters like a smoke upon the hills. 

There is something in October sets the gypsy blood astir; 
We must rise and follow her, 
When from every hill of flame 
She calls and calls each vagabond by name. 

Poetry for Young People: The Seasons

     This was a difficult poem for my intermediate kids, but we worked through it.  After we worked through it, we wrote autumn poems of our own.  Many of them were influenced by the Carman poem. Some lifted lines, tried to replicate the rhyme pattern and meter, etc. Here's mine:

There is something in the Autumn
That sets my soul astir;
The frost and chill arrive
Leaving summer as a blur.

Gone are walks on beach shores
And steaming, hazy morns;
Arriving are the trick-or-treaters
And bowls of candy corn.

Red, yellow, gold confetti
Thrown atop the trees;
God shows off all His glory,
Pay attention, if you please!

From a fifth grader, Connor:

The winter air is very cold,
it's been around so long it's old.
But sliding down the hill I go,
across the freshly fall snow.

The season spring brings many changes
as the environment rearranges.
The green grass, the deer are running,
but watch out spring cause summer's coming.

The summer sun up in the sky,
people go to pools and take a dive.
Kids are running, school is out,
but fall will come without a doubt.

The cool fall air, the falling leaves,
as they leave their creators, the trees.
All the seasons come and go,
now back to winter and the snow.

From fifth grader, Megan:

The red and orange are in a blur
I will capture them for sure.
They fall off the trees,
Yes, the beautiful leaves.

The colors of Autumn fall to the ground
And then I take a great big bound.
The leaves now fly everywhere
Now I am on the ground.

They are life and I hate to see them leave
But they get whirled down the street
Goodbye, Goodbye they cry
I just stay on the ground and lie around.

I love autumn as you can see
So would you please join me?
They're back again
Like a great big train.

The leaves are back and I can rejoice
And then I hear a little voice
Come and jump and play with us
These leaves I can trust.

I'm happy for now
But this year 
I hope they stay much longer
They are my friends and they've been yonder.

Take a look at Michelle's blog to see the rest of the Poetry Friday posts!


  1. Holly, I love this post. It's incredible to see what you and your students created after closely reading "A Vagabond Song." It will be great to share these with the sixth graders who are finishing poems for the Poetry Storybox.

  2. I cannot do an analysis lesson without following it with writing. Just seems a natural way to respond. Poem to poem. You and your students internalized the rhythm and were able to reproduce it in your own creations. Thanks for sharing.