poetry and prose about place

under the red maple

with 7 comments

We have a huge red maple (Acer rubrum L.) in front of our house.  It forces a turn in the walkway, but I love to greet it every morning and watch it through the seasons.  When we first lived here 30 years ago, the tree was small enough to encircle with thumb and finger.  Now I can’t fit my arms around its girth.

Autumn inspires this tree.  It takes its time, gradually turning yellow, red and orange over several days.  Then it gives up all its leaves within a day. 

When I drive my car away the next morning, a dark rectangle of driveway remains, within the circle of new-fallen leaves.


summer in flames



leaf fall

embers settle

on the walkway

patio table and chairs




to walk in silence

red flames

and careful steps

a conflagration



shadows lost

and branches

scratch the sky

sun bright

hands warm before the fire


© Jane Tims  2011

Written by jane tims

October 14, 2011 at 7:59 am

7 Responses

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  1. Lovely!


    Watching Seasons

    October 20, 2011 at 7:11 pm

  2. What a beautiful tree & I like the upward view you’ve taken. How lovely to have experienced its growth too.The trees where I live are only just starting to turn from green – they mostly won’t be these colours till around November.


    Sonya Chasey

    October 18, 2011 at 3:18 pm

    • Hi. It’s nice to know that you have the colors still to look forward to! Jane


      jane tims

      October 18, 2011 at 8:20 pm

  3. Oh what an amazing, gorgeous tree! I can just picture your car surrounded by a rectangle of new-fallen leaves – the dazzling leaf colors, your poem, setting a mood that I long for!


    Barbara Rodgers

    October 16, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    • Hi Barbara. I love autumn. Today the mass of leaves in the driveway have faded in color but are a miracle to walk among! We’ve had a big wind the last two days and the maples are just about done with color for this year. Jane


      jane tims

      October 16, 2011 at 4:21 pm

  4. This is so lovely, Jane. Thank you. Have you read Luci Shaw’s work? If not, she has a website. I remember years ago, being so inspired by her book, “Listen To The Green,” and have read every book of hers since then. She is a photographer too.


    Ellen Grace Olinger

    October 14, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    • Hi Ellen. I’m glad you like it. I haven’t read her work, but I’ll have a look for certain. ‘Listen to the Green’ sounds environmental (or Irish)! Jane


      jane tims

      October 14, 2011 at 8:00 pm

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