Poetry Friday: Solitudes by Margaret Gibson

Poetry Friday is hosted by Michelle @ Today’s Little Ditty. Join us for the round up!


When I arrived at our farm early in July, this tree was not quite knee high in a field of corn, by late August when I left to go back to life and work in New Jersey, the corn was waist high.  My last summer view of the field was of a swaying sea of green and gold – high season for corn.

When we returned last weekend, the corn was but a summer memory.  Tractors were out at every farm in sight, mowing down the fields for silage.  The tree stood tall, proud, and a bit lonely.  Summer, it was clear, was finally over.  The tree, it seemed to me, is preparing for a season of solitude.


For today, I will memorize
the two trees now in end-of-summer light

and the drifts of wood asters as the yard slopes away toward
the black pond, blue

in the clouds that shine and float there, as if risen

from the bottom, unbidden. Now, just over the fern—
quick—a glimpse of it,

the plume, a fox-tail’s copper, as the dog runs in ovals and eights,
chasing scent.

The yard is a waiting room. I have my chair. You, yours.

The hawk has its branch in the pine.

White petals ripple in the quiet light.

In the quiet, a necklace of gourds on the fence.

A mourning cloak on a seeded spray of crabgrass.

An undulant whine of cicadas.


13 thoughts on “Poetry Friday: Solitudes by Margaret Gibson

  1. The poem is full of imagery I can relate to. The hawk, the cicadas. The cicadas have quieted finally, but the heat is still here. I’m ready for fall.
    This poet has my maiden name, so I was taken aback for a second. Wish I had her talent as well as her name.

  2. Margaret wasn’t the only one taken aback! I also wondered, “Is this OUR Margaret?” Thanks for sharing this gorgeous poem, Tara. I fell into the first two lines, “For today, I will memorize/
    the two trees now in end-of-summer light,” and then, transfixed by blue dragonflies and white petals rippling, I lost myself in that cicada whine.

  3. “The yard is a waiting room” really pops for me as well! Thank you for sharing, and yes, I thought it was our Margaret at first, too! xo

  4. This is a lovely, wistful post & poem, Tara. I believe that if I were not a teacher with a New Year celebration to enjoy each September, I would probably spend the month in a funk of depression…autumn is nice, as Margaret proves, but the goodbye to summer is so heavy….

    I hope Livy is safely arrived and that she has the right shoes for every adventure!

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