This Poem was Submitted By: Mick Fraser On Date: 2004-02-08 00:30:40 . . . Click Here To Mail this Poem to a Friend!

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For Mom

Cracking greeted my footsteps the walnut boards of my deck voicing displeasure with my rude interruption Drawn to breath the illusive winter aroma I ventured into heaven out back to renew the vows I had made to Mother The respite in her white-filled fury provided an entrance to her place of worship and allowed me to answer the call My appreciation commenced at the hedge praising her almighty power  as the capped cedars cringed Stark shrubs both brown and gray dotted the virginal prayer patch  and bore witness to my affirmation Little cheepers flitted about their camouflage cover savoring the continued christening given by the white whirling wisps     The guest of honor arrived after a long flight with his glaring red habit atop the pine surveying the scene, broadcasting his jazz    Mr. Macintosh stood there, looking thin  but this time I wouldn't disturb him sleeping soundly as he was Synthetic supporters stuck up from the garden waiting to again be embraced by sprouts, flowers and fruit My crunching steps on her blanket signaled another reminder  of the purpose for the ceremony The bright reflections stung my eyes, fueled my heart and warmed my face  as my words came out as smiles The inverted blue bowl that covers us  provided comfort and a realization   that will remind me to thank her each day

Copyright © February 2004 Mick Fraser

Additional Notes:
This is as religious (spiritual?)as I get. Thanks to all the TPL nature lovers that continually inspire. Darwin rules.

This Poem was Critiqued By: Wayne R. Leach On Date: 2004-02-25 21:58:29
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.26316
Ah, yes. Mother Earth. Excellent can be used freely to describe this beautiful collection of triads. The slant rhyme "aroma" "mother" really peaked my attention and drove me forward. Then, the excellent consonance further on in the poem really pleased this reader. Wonderful job. I find nothing of which to complain, naturally [pun intended]. Please continue to post more, Mick.

This Poem was Critiqued By: Jordan Brendez Bandojo On Date: 2004-02-19 22:37:41
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.85714
Darwin rules? Hi Mick, this is something special for me! First of all, your linguistics is very exquisite so I apologize in advance if I can misinterpret your theme. I dare critique this because I am read this in awe! Smile. Poor English I am! You pointed out in your additional notes that this is nature-oriented that connotes spirituality...thanks for the clue. There is a thrilling action in your first input: "Cracking greeted my footsteps the walnut boards of my deck voicing displeasure with my rude interruption" --- i feel the strongness in your idea here as to initialize the theme. I like the image in the second stanza. "Drawn to breath the illusive winter aroma I ventured into heaven out back to renew the vows I had made to Mother" --- i feel the aroma of nature. I like the reference to Mother as the thought is directed to your true mother. The 'v' sound is remarkably nice in ventured/heaven/vows. The characterization of she is brings a mothely thought "her place of worship" --- ah, spirituality! Stanza 4 and 6 are full of 'c' sound, commenced/capped/cedars/cringed --- camouflage/cover/continued/christening. Nice crunching sound. It sets the picture of nature with the wavering of the 'w' allit in white/whirling/wisps. And here comes more thrill in the arrival of the guest of honor. Interesting visual in the garden. The inclusion of the proper noun "Mr. Macintosh" is just a manifestation of originality. The last two stanzas are dramatic and reliving. There is freshness and relaxation in "as my words came out as smiles". And the real comfort a nature can give is given in the final thought: "The inverted blue bowl that covers us provided comfort and a realization that will remind me to thank her each day" You have a wonderful artistry, Mick. One of my favs this month so far. Thanks for sharing. More of it...Jordan
This Poem was Critiqued By: Carolyn Minsker On Date: 2004-02-14 10:24:33
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.00000
Hello Mick. I'm just dropping in for a diversion while I feel the need to shirk my studies. Enjoyed this much. In your second strophe, I need to tell you {breath is what you see in the cold, breathe is what you do to stay alive.) "Illusive winter aroma" tricky! I read the meaning as "elusive" at first which also fits so well with your scene. The capped cedars cringed? (Because it's not nice to fool mother nature?) I actually like the spirit of your poem, very much. In my spiritual life, trees are my steeples, too, unencumbered by personality politics. I like that your congregation is peopled by such characters as Mr. Macintosh, (I'm sure he'll wake up for confirmation.) That I think is my favorite of your strophes. Interesting misleading title, the astonishing image of the inverted blue bowl for the sky, and my total recognition of how words aren't necessary for devotions in nature; smiles are enough. Thank you for sharing.
This Poem was Critiqued By: Joanne M Uppendahl On Date: 2004-02-12 15:41:54
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.50000
Mick: Ahem, poet - your tongue-in-check appreciative paean to Mother Nature is a huge treat. You don't address her from a distance as to be worshipped, but 'up close and personal' as if you are very well-acquainted. This poem seems tailor-made to completely delight me in every nature-loving synapse. Instead of a Latin, hymn of thanksgiving addressed to Apollo you address this poem to the reader, particularly in the final stanza. Perhaps, if you do decide to revise, you might steal a bit of brilliance from that last quatrain and make it part of your title. As it is, the title doesn't let me know that I came to the right place. But that was (is) part of the fun and celebration of this piece. Your familiarity with her - and us. Cracking greeted my footsteps the walnut boards of my deck voicing displeasure with my rude interruption The sounds in your first line are 'onomatopoeia' or imitation of a theme by a poem's sound (Kinzie). The hard 'c' and repeated g's and t's sound like crunching boards in winter, like a somewhat, pardon the expression, elderly, and perhaps irritated response by the 'voice' of She Who Must Be Obeyed. I am always ready to smile when reading a poem of yours, and I don't know why. When I got to the word "rude" I was anticipating a 'good time' here and was not wrong in my assumption. Drawn to breath the illusive winter aroma I ventured into heaven out back to renew the vows I had made to Mother It's harder to smell things in dry air - isn't it? What is the "illusive winter aroma" --you give us a millisecond to ponder that - and then take us with you into your "heaven out back." I almost could have stopped here - as I felt pleasure and kinship. But then again, you addressed "Mother" twice - the titular "Mom" and once again in L3 of S2. Perhaps you were writing of your biological human mother, after all. I could deal with that. The respite in her white-filled fury provided an entrance to her place of worship and allowed me to answer the call Hmmm. I thought to myself, "Mick's mother sounds like she has quite a temper!" Then, of course, recognized "her white-filled fury" as the snowstorms of late. I love the term "place of worship" as applied here. It makes this poem very personally appealing to me, because you've expressed my feelings about nature in a quintessential way in the entirety of this poem. My appreciation commenced at the hedge praising her almighty power as the capped cedars cringed Laughing! Irreverent-reverence always does that to me. "capped cedars cringed" is witty, and yet - one can see the cedars, scalps or fingertips, depending on how one views them, shivering under their caps of frozen water. You've used sounds again - wonderfully - in the plosive p's of "appreciation/praising/power/capped" for example. Stark shrubs both brown and gray dotted the virginal prayer patch and bore witness to my affirmation I can't go on like this, dwelling on each splendid turn of phrase or I won't finish this until past time to prepare dinner. Again, you've done it with the p's in "prayer patch." Little cheepers flitted about their camouflage cover savoring the continued christening given by the white whirling wisps Here's where you got me, (as if you hadn't captured me before!) with the "little cheepers" who "flitted about" and your continuing allits and wry imagery. Truly, I think your "cheepers" must meet my "flying grizzlys" (warblers). The guest of honor arrived after a long flight with his glaring red habit atop the pine surveying the scene, broadcasting his jazz Now I have goosebumps - and am laughing aloud. Your "guest of honor" must be a cardinal - though mentally I have subsituted my Red-headed Woodpecker for his bombastic attitude. Truly, you have herein pegged the bird pride and hubris that endears without sounding a tad overly sentimental. Mr. Macintosh stood there, looking thin but this time I wouldn't disturb him sleeping soundly as he was Macintosh apple tree, I presume. The apple that was discovered by John McIntosh in Dundas County, Ontario. A hardy tree producing sweet dessert apples. You probably "disturbed him" last in around October, when the last apples ripened. This stanza cleverly calls to mind both a British raincoat and a scrumptious Canadian apple. Synthetic supporters stuck up from the garden waiting to again be embraced by sprouts, flowers and fruit Nice assonance of "ou/ow/ui" open vowel sounds in the line above. Very feminine. My crunching steps on her blanket signaled another reminder of the purpose for the ceremony Terrific auditory imagery - these specific details make the poem especially enjoyable. The bright reflections stung my eyes, fueled my heart and warmed my face as my words came out as smiles Here the speaker reveals his very warm heart, "fueled" by the "bright reflections" - again, cleverly combining two elements: the bright reflective quality of snow, and the reflections of a nature lover. I especially loved this last line. This entire stanza is especially rhythmic, in keeping with the thematic heartbeat of the middle line. The inverted blue bowl that covers us provided comfort and a realization that will remind me to thank her each day Wonderful, once more, use of sounds in the sharp 'v' fricatives repeated in L1 and 2. The 'attitude of gratitude' is contagious, and the poem a revelation of finding beauty in the remembered bounty of the garden, in the anticipated gardenening and crisp, sweet taste of the McIntosh. But the crowning touch (sorry I can't help but pun a little now and then) is the "inverted blue bowl" which you saved for last. The sky seems to enfold protectively over the scene, this ceremony of thanks to Mother Nature in her wintery dress. Mmmmmm. Delicious from first word to last. Thank you for the pleasure! All my best, Joanne
This Poem was Critiqued By: Gary A Wilmot On Date: 2004-02-09 10:40:33
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Hi Mike Your poem describes a tender tribute to one dear person who had a passion for wild birds. I can certainly relate.My wife and I have always had a love for wildlife.We recently restocked our back yard with suet,seed,breadcrumbs,to help nourish the hardier species that are brave enough to hang around in our arctic weather this year. Your poem alludes to a connection of the feathered friends to the spirit of your mother,as if her soul is alive with the fluttering of feathers.(I do believe that spirits are alive in all living things,and that they perpetuate in a never-ending cycle). You begin the poem with a personification,bringing alive something that one would relate as being stiff and lifeless,particularly in the "dead of winter".(That phrase itself has it's own telltale connotations). "Cracking greeted my footsteps the walnut boards of my deck voicing displeasure with my rude interruption..." You force the reader to see life where one may not normally see life. In much of our environment we become "cabin-struck" in winters' long,harsh,dark,icy grasp, it's gloomy cavern of gray lifelessness pushing many to the solemn pits of depression. Your poem takes a simple tribute and in it's modest description,gives the reader a look at the vibrant soul,very much alive in the colorful display of fluttering feathers. Winter takes on a new vitality with the contrast of the cold,stiff winter ("Stark shrubs both brown and gray...") and the bright affirmation of a stubborn survivor ("The guest of honor arrived after a long flight with his glaring red habit atop the pine surveying the scene, broadcasting his jazz"). Your poem takes a look at nature in a season of harshness that is a constant reminder of mortality.In a personal tribute you remind us that life goes on in a never-ending,vibrant cycle of life.Thank you for sharing.
This Poem was Critiqued By: marilyn terwilleger On Date: 2004-02-08 16:14:46
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 1.00000
Hi Mick, How I love this poem!! You have so poetically described a winter garden...which could have been mine, by the way. A beautiful tribute to our mother of all nature. You begin by taking the reader onto your deck where the walnut boards complain of your they too rest in winter...."allusive winter aroma"...great line... .."the respite in her white filled fury"..perhaps a wind blown patch of grass, barren and without snow. You pay homeage to the cringing capped cedars. ...."dotted the virginal prayer patch"..undisturbed snow in this lovely scene. I love the imagery of the little cheepers flitting about. The guest of honor habit..brodcasting his jazz... is this a Cardinal? "Mr McIntosh...looking thin"...sans leaves...he sleeps soundly. Great imagery and descriptors in the synthetic supports sticking up from the garden waiting to be embraced by spring flowers and fruit....I can see a bare trellis here waiting patiently for spring...."My crunching steps on her blanket"...where I live when snow crunches under foot the temps are always very cold and warm breath forms ice crystals on the edges of wool stocking caps. My most favorite line is..."the inverted blue bowl that covers us" that is just brilliant and I wish I had thought of it! This is a wonderful piece...if you intended another meaning that is hidden to me then I'm sorry but you put me in your garden and I did so enjoy the walk. Peace.....Marilyn
This Poem was Critiqued By: Claire H. Currier On Date: 2004-02-08 10:49:09
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Hi Poet......nice structure, superb word flow which brings forth many images within the lines and though you might only get this spiritual you certainly have created a place of peace and serenity....... or perhaps mother did? the little cheepers flittering about their camouflage covers indeeds is a sight to behold within ones mind... the garden which comes to life each spring of the year must be beautiful to say the least since you have painted such a picture of beauty at this time of the year. Thanks for sharing with us , be safe and God Bless, Claire A very nice read....thanks
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