Mushroom Fever

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The mushrooms have been nothing short of spectacular around here this fall and I’ve had such fun hunting for different varieties. I have no intention of tasting these wild mushrooms, but I love taking their pictures. The variety of shapes, sizes and colors is simply amazing and there’s so much to learn! Even a few minutes of research reveals fascinating details. For example, the yellow-orange Fly Agaric (top right) is somewhat poisonous and slightly hallucinogenic. Legend has it that fierce Viking fighters ate it before heading into battle. Yikes! The common names for mushrooms are also a delight. They range from cautionary to whimsical to disgusting, with names like Death Cap, Pink Disco, Judas’ Ear, Trumpet of Death, Weeping Toothcrust (ew!), Old Man in the Woods, Golden Navel, Dewdrop Dapperling, Destroying Angel, etc. What fun! These days I’m inspired and fascinated by funghi!

Mushrooms and fairy folk are irrevocably intertwined in my mind. I imagine all sorts of fairy frolics when I stumble across toadstools and fairy rings.

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Where wee folk wander
dimpled dew-drenched prints
blossom into
wending mushroom byways

Molly Hogan (c) 2017

This one really sparked my imagination! An owl? An octopus?

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Preparing for the Mushroom Halloween Contest

Parasols are old and trite
expected ‘shroom attire
An owl in flight
a rare delight!
Blue ribbon’s his desire

Molly Hogan (c) 2017

Or perhaps this one…I couldn’t resist the first line. (Get it?)

A fiesty fun guy
embraces fall festivities
eschews convention
transforms into an owl

Molly Hogan (c) 2017

 

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And then for some reason these two captured my heart. To me, there was something so poignant about them. (I swear I was not eating the mushrooms!)

Partners

Aged and weather-withered
they lean into each other
long past taut youth
together
they watch
falling autumn leaves
carpet the ground
about them

Molly Hogan (c) 2017

This week Laura Purdie Salas is hosting the Poetry Friday Roundup at her blog Writing the World for Kids.  While you’re there, check out her weekly 15 Words or Less poems and her poem sketches. They’re wonderful!  Then, if you want to shift gears, head outside and look for some mushrooms!

33 thoughts on “Mushroom Fever

  1. katswhiskers says:

    Oh – I love your mushrooms, too! This is such a wondrous, wonderful post. (Except, ew! – Weeping Toothcrust. *gag*)

    Your partners are so sweet!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. lindabaie says:

    I’ve only seen such variety when hiking with a mushroom expert who taught me which were ok and which not, to eat! Your pictures are wonderful, and poems enchanting. I too love that last one with the words of ‘leaning into each other’ and then ‘mushroom byways’ is a lovely thought, Molly. Wonderful poems all!

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      Thanks, Linda. This is only a small sampling of the mushrooms I’ve seen. I’ve been amazed by the variety this year. What fun it must have been to hike with a knowledgeable expert!

      Like

  3. These are wonderful Molly, the pictures, names of the shrooms and your ditty poems! I love the Halloween owl shroom and the poem you penned, superb! They’s be fun to draw too, thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, WOW! This post is full of fun….and great poems. I love the Halloween contest. I see an owl. But, a ghost is possible too. Great photographs of these beautiful fungi. When I was a kid I had a fascination with drawing mushrooms and fairy folk houses among them. I love how you think….and that it turns into poetry. Happy Poetry Friday.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love those mushroom names. The weirder, the better! And that owl-ghoul-fungi is wonderful. I often write poetry paired with mushrooms. I have a bunch on my site if you search for mushroom. In fact, I was surprised how many there were. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. cvarsalona says:

    I enjoyed your whimsical flight into fall after your walk, Molly. You found some very intriguing sights. (Decide which ones you would like to send me for my fall gallery Autumn Ablaze and also send me your Twitter handle, please.)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow! What wonderful mushroom poems and photos. That last photo and poem is quite touching as they watch the leaves fall together.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Looks like you have all the same mushrooms (we call them toadstools) that we do here – I felt like I was looking at my back yard, near the tree line! Love your poems, Molly – especially the first one, with its “wending mushroom byways.”

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh my goodness! That owl/octopus mushroom is fantastic! I think that should be its official name – Owl-Octopus Mushroom. Osbert the Owl-Octopus Mushroom – I feel a picture book coming on! ;-D

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Tabatha says:

    I’d love to go on a nature walk with you, Molly. You find such fun(gi) things! “Weather-withered” is a great descriptor. Looking forward to seeing more of your wonderful photo/poem pairs!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Such great photos and poetry! I used to live in Utah where they had a mushroom club. They would all meet up, go searching for mushrooms, and then come back and the experts would identify the safe mushrooms to eat.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. maryleehahn says:

    Wow! Great photos inspiring great poems! There’s fungus amungus! (sorry, couldn’t resist) We used to get fairy rings in our yard back home. They were magical!

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      Thanks, Mary Lee. Photography is one of my favorite forms of “productive procrastination”–I can justify heading out to the woods or to the beach or wherever when I should really be doing school work, house work, etc. There is something magical about those mushrooms and this year, either they’ve been more amazing than usual, or I’ve been paying more attention.

      Like

  13. Molly, these are amazing–the images and the poems. I wrote about slime molds recently and loved their fun names, as well. That owl in flight is mesmerizing, and the two mushrooms, with the one leaning protectively over the other–your poems just capture all the magic here! I love all of them, but that last one is my favorite. Thanks for the #poemsketch shoutout. Learning art is hard.

    Liked by 1 person

    • mbhmaine says:

      Thanks, Laura! The last one is my favorite, too. I tell lots of people about your poem sketches. I truly admire how you capture so much with such an economy of words and then enhance that with your sketches. Wonderful!

      Like

  14. Molly, these photos and the words you use to describe them are enchanting! I’m totally going mushroom hunting today…I hope I see some as whimsical as yours.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Who knew mushrooms could inspire such delightful poetry! I love them all!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Yeah! You picked up the fairy torch and ran with it! And you mentioned in my post last week mushrooms were rampant. I took these shots for you on our vernal pool walk on Monday with my Kindergarteners! https://photos.app.goo.gl/BDRnNHaMdR8X0TjB2

    Liked by 1 person

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