poetry friday roundup is here!

Welcome to Poetry Friday at Alphabet Soup!

Please help yourself to a friendly cup of hot chocolate and a yummy cookie. If you’ve been extra good this week, take two. 🙂

I think many of you would agree that October is the best autumn month. September can be a little too warm, the vestiges of summer dragging its feet, while November can have its grey, gloomy moments, inviting melancholy. Once we’re past Thanksgiving and rushing headlong into December, we’ve switched into holiday shopping mode, which doesn’t feel autumnal at all.

But October? Peak color, chipper mornings, deep blue skies, the anticipation of Halloween. Kids are happy in October dunking for apples, carving pumpkins, and fulfilling their wishes to dress up as anyone or any thing as they go trick-or-treating.

This month I was happy to discover Jeffrey Bean, a new-to-me Michigan poet who’s written a series of direct address poems beginning with “Kid, this is . . . “

Try this one on for size.


“Autumn’s Window” by Loré Pemberton

you can make the maples blaze
just by stopping to look,
you can set your clock to the barks
of geese. Somewhere the grandfathers
who own this town lean down to iron
crisp blue shirts, their faces bathing
in steam, and blackbirds
clamor in packs,
make plans behind corn.

You know this,
you were born whistling
at crackling stars, you snap
your fingers and big turtles
slide out of rivers to answer.

You can swim one more time
in the puddle of sun
in your water glass, taste icicles
already in the white crunch
of your lunch apple. Go
to sleep. I’ll put on my silver suit
and chase the sky into the moon.

~ from The Missouri Review, February 2016
via Madison Safer

About this poem, Jeffrey says:

One thing I love about being a parent is the way it wakes me up to the sensory details of the world. As a father of a five-year-old, I find myself trying to see through my daughter’s eyes, and in doing so I pay even more attention than usual to corn, turtles, flocks of blackbirds, maples, apples, water, etc., noticing the beauty as well as the strangeness in these things. In the series of “kid” poems from which “Kid, this is October” comes, I like the way the mode of direct address allows the father-speaker to catalog many such details in the form of advice, encouragement, pseudo-fables, or, in the case of this poem, as a kind of lullaby. He wants the kid to open up to the world as much as possible and he also wants the kid to go to sleep, which pretty much sums up my experiences with parenthood so far. What has been most interesting to me in writing these poems is the way it puts me in touch with my own childhood. It has made me realize how crucial imagination has been in my life as a kid and how crucial it continues to be in my life as a father.

~ from The Missouri Review, February 2016

It’s the same world, but we all see, hear, and feel it differently thanks to the mind’s eye. That’s our human super power, but often we need children to remind us of it.

And now, Kid, This is Mr. Linky. Feed him your poetic goodness. 🙂



Enjoy your meanderings around the blogosphere, engage in a little fall folderol this weekend, and have a Happy Halloween next Sunday.

Help yourself to a treat.
Caramel, anyone?
Thanks for joining us!

*Copyright © 2021 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

36 thoughts on “poetry friday roundup is here!

  1. Favorite lines, if I have to push myself for one or two…
    “You can swim one more time
    in the puddle of sun”
    “I’ll put on my silver suit
    and chase the sky into the moon.”

    Deliciously imaginative poem Jama, I could swim in that sea of imagination forever!
    Thanks for hosting, and for all the delectable treats this week. I see you have my fav pumpkin art in your masthead, and I’m loving the rest of the art you shared. …And those lucky bears to have a plate with their names on them!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love those first two lines so much, Jama! Thanks for introducing me to this new-to-me poet and his “Kid This is…” poems. Thanks also for hosting and for the delicious assortment of pictures. October is a beaut of a month!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The sense of your October joy is further enhanced by Jeffrey Bean’s poem. From the title and later in his comments regarding the poem and how it helped him connect to events in his own childhood, the motivation for the poem becomes quite clear. Enjoy the mellow drift of October Jama and thank you for hosting.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. One of the best things about Poetry Friday for me is learning new poems, new poets. I love the idea of starting out a poem with “Kid, This Is…” Such a great entry into a description. Thank you for hosting this week. I don’t mind if I do enjoy a cookie and some cider. Mmmmmmmm.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks Jama! I love October and agree with your featured poet that seeing things through the eyes of our young makes us notice ALL the month has to notice! Your photos and treats are as inviting as the poem you featured! Thanks for the introduction to Jeffrey. I’ll be sure to look into his work!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love that you found and shared this October poem, Jama. His words, then later comments, are true to me; kids keep us connected to our own childhood and to what life offers over and over. Plus, this autumn’s October has been particularly gorgeous. Thanks so much for hosting!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Jama, I can never get enough of your whimsical magic dished out each week at your blog. This one is a delicious mix of hot chocolate, artwork, your thoughts, and a new poem from a poet I am not familiar with. Thank you for hosting such a fabulous October feast.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Jama, thank you for the delicious hot chocolate and pumpkin cookies, but I’ve made myself sick not being able to stop eating all the creamy sweet caramels. Yes, October is a special autumn month. Thanks for the reminder. I’m living in a place now that the changes are subtle, but I always did love October.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. You feed us so generously here, Jama. Body and soul. I love this poem by Jeffrey Bean for its specific words that one atop the other blend into magic. I am going to copy it into my notebook for study. Thank you, as always, for everything. Happy Octobering to you and yours. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I love October, too, Jama, and you have captured it so well in this post through words and pictures. Thanks also for sharing the poem by Jeffrey Bean as well as his thoughts about it. I scribbled down ideas as I was reading and will go back later to read and reread his words.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. You never disappoint. Your posts full of delicious treats, including poetry. This poem is a lovely glimpse into the world of a child. I liked reading the commentary, too. It is always the parents’ hope for children to open wide to the wonders of the world and also to go to sleep. My daughter and her husband have been struggling with the sleep part with my grandson. I think he is just too creative to want to sleep. Of course, that doesn’t do them any good.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I love fall!! It’s my favorite season and I’m so happy to be living in a place where it blazes in all its bright glory–New England!!

    I LOVE this poem, Jama!! You discover the most wonderful poets and artists–thank you for sharing them with us!!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. This poem amplifies the all the fall feels. It really is such an enjoyable time of year in sights, smells and delightful dishes. Thanks for hosting – and all the tasty treats!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Jama: If I were a teddy bear, I would want to live inside your blog—but only after I ate up EVERYTHING in it!! (as you know, I am NOT a teddy bear, but I STILL want to eat up everything in it)

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I loved Jeffrey Bean’s poem and his statement about it. It’s what children’s poets try to do, see the world from a child’s eyes and he’s done that. I love thinking about the icicles in the apple and swimming in the sun inside a water glass.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Jeffrey Bean is new to me, too, and I love that poem, with its focus on so many sensory delights. And I’m with you on October. It’s the bestest of the best of autumn. Thanks for hosting this week (even though I didn’t get a post up.) 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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