Bird Poetry and more Poetry Swap Goodies


Night heron at the Squam Lakes Natural Science Center in NH

I’ve been immersed in birds this summer. I’ve long enjoyed watching (and writing about) the birds at my feeders (here and here and lots of other places!). This year I’ve upped my interest and spent a considerable amount of time photographing birds (or at least trying to) and reading about them. (Note–If you’re looking for a fascinating non-fiction read, pick up The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession, and the Natural History Heist of the Century by Kirk Wallace Johnson.) This intensified bird interest has percolated through my life, emerging unexpectedly. For example, my responses to Laura Purdie Salas’s past three 15 Words or Less challenges have all centered on birds, regardless of the photo prompt! Here’s last week’s example, in response to this filtered photo of a fountain in Cyprus:


Photo credit to Laura Purdie Salas


Fledgling dreams
in smoldering ashes
From flames

©M. Hogan, 2018


Then this week I started to share my recent bird rescue adventure for my Slice of Life, and it evolved into a 4-part series! (If you’re interested, the first part is here.) In short, I’ve got birds on the brain, so Christie Wyman’s bird-related poem challenge felt like a natural fit.

Here are a couple of bird-related poems I’ve written recently:



Swift swooping swallows
Wing through shadows
At dawn and dusk in a
Of aerial predation
What a show!

©2018 M.  Hogan


Swallow and reflection–I’m still working on those action shots, darn it!

Then, back to another love of mine: Dandelions! Kat Apel, superstar Poetry Swapper, wrote a double reverse acrostic dandelion poem for me. What? I never even knew such a thing was possible! Stunning! I read it again and again, awed by this poetic feat. She makes it all sound so natural and fluid, yet manages to stay within that insanely ambitious structure! Then, to top it off, she presents it with a delightful photo and all sorts of playful fonts. A visual feast as well!

dandelion double reverse acrostic (1).jpg

close up dandelion (1).jpg

Kat also included a wonderful assortment of photo postcards–Beautiful pictures with often humorous friendship quotes. Another big “YES!” for the Summer Poetry Swap. Thanks so much, Kat!

postcard assortment (1).jpg

This week’s Poetry Friday Roundup is hosted by Christie Wyman whom I recently met in real life! We crossed paths in July at the Heinemann Teacher Tour in Portsmouth, NH. Before that (and since then) I’ve spent loads of time enjoying her writing at her blog, Wondering and Wandering. Stop by to enjoy the flock of poems that have flown in for today’s gathering!


Anticipating Spring



Now that the temperature is slightly more welcoming and the snow pack has receded, I’ve been spending more time outside. In addition to enjoying the fresh air and scouting out subtle signs of approaching spring, I’ve been taking pictures again. I hadn’t realized how much I’d missed it! Here are three short spring- and photo-inspired poems from the last week.

Spring Prophecy.jpg

Spring Prophecy

Along winter-bare branches
twilight raindrops
sparkle like blossoms

©2018 M. Hogan


Foggy morning
at the cemetery
snow melts
time stands still

©2018 M. Hogan

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to stop and take a photo, but as I drove to work this week, I noticed this welcome sight:

Migrating birds perch
among emerging spring buds
like precocious blossoms

©2018 M. Hogan

And finally, a big happy birthday wish to Lee Bennett Hopkins, poet and anthologist extraordinaire. While searching for signs of spring and all things “spring-ish”, I found his poem, Spring. I love the rhythm of it!

Lee Bennett Hopkins


cloud-bursting showers…
(click here to read the entire poem)

You can find the Poetry Friday Roundup this week at the talented Robyn Hood Black’s blog, Life on the Deckle Edge. She’s also hosting the surprise birthday celebration for Lee Bennett Hopkins, so make sure to stop by and join in the birthday festivities!