Autumn Surprises

The other day Jessica Bigi posted on Facebook that she liked my poem in Cricket.  Hmmmm, I thought, I have a poem in Cricket? I figured she must be thinking of Ladybug, which I knew was reprinting a poem of mine this month. But out of curiosity I googled the October table-of-contents–and there was my poem! Because of an address mix-up I had not yet received any contributor copies (and had actually forgotten that it was in the pipeline.) I was thrilled to get a peek at it via email:life_of_a_leaf_cricket

This poem started life as a response to Laura Salas’ 15 word-or-less challenge. When I revised and expanded it, it grew a concrete oak leaf shape–and I was happy to see that the illustrator featured oak leaves falling near my poem. Thank you, Laura, for the original inspiration! And thanks to Shelly Hehenberger for the wonderful illustration.

And while I’m celebrating, here’s my poem that’s reprinted in Ladybug this month. It also started from a prompt–this one from Shutta Crum many years ago at a Michigan SCBWI conference. Shutta gave a talk about adapting fairy tales and nursery rhymes. Can you recognize the original nursery rhyme that inspired Five Little Bandits? 

It’s Friday–there’s lots more poetry on tap! Tricia has the Poetry Friday roundup at The Miss Rumphius Effect.

47 thoughts on “Autumn Surprises

  1. Yay, Buffy!! Double the fun! Your poems delight me every time! I’m sure both groups of magazine readers will be charmed too.

  2. Oh, your leaf poem makes me so happy! Once, I wrote a poem with the words xylem and phloem in it and got laughed at to the point where I went into poetry hiding for a while. Viva the science poem! Nicely done and congrats on the publication. Have a great week.

  3. Librarians are going to love to use your variation of Five Little Pumpkins in their story hours! Since the kids are already familiar with the rhythm, it should be a snap to teach them your poem.

  4. Congrats for getting published in two great magazines! Fun poems too! Those 5 little raccoons may have been the 5 that fell out of the tree when it toppled up at the cottage last spring.

  5. Buffy I love both poems, especially the leaf one. I had remembered it from 15 words. I knew some of it was familiar. Glad that I could share such wonderful news with you.

  6. Buffy, your choice of words and rhythm in both poems are wonderful. I especially like the first poem with its fashion sense and of course, it has to do with fall. It should be a great model of seasonal concrete poem. May I place the Life of a Leaf in my Autumnventure Gallery?

    1. Thank you Carol. I’m happy for you to share the poem, but I can’t give you permission to share the illustration (I asked the editor if I could post it on my blog.) I probably have a photo that you could put it on if you’d like.

  7. What lovely ideas, and perfectly executed–no, not executed, brought to life! I especially like the first line of your leaf poem: “A leaf is a map with roadways of sap.”

  8. I fell in love with this post with the first four lines of the leaf poem. Perfect! And the shape… Your wonderful words inspired gorgeous artwork for both poems.

  9. Love both poems, Buffy. Great illustrations too — the oak leaf shape is too cool. We have some bandits around here so it was fun reading about them. 🙂

  10. That IS a nice surprise! So much good stuff packed into that leaf poem, Buffy—the shape, the rhyme scheme, the mouth-watering word choices, and nutritious information, too. And those those sloshy little bandits…now how fun is that?!

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