nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

Posts Tagged ‘poem

talking trees

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trees in conversation

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they say

if trees communicate

they do so

beneath the ground

communication network

of rootlets

and mycelia

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I still listen

above ground

to the friction squeal

of trunks

rubbing together

flutter of birch bark

whisper of leaves

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I think they try

to learn my language

speak to me

of longevity, the cycle

of the story in layers

added year to year

bilingual trees

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All my best,

Jane

Written by jane tims

April 1, 2020 at 7:00 am

Ball’s Bridge’

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In southern Ontario, the Maitland River winds through fields and woodlands before it empties into Lake Huron at Goderich.

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When we visited the area two summers ago, we discovered the Ball’s Bridge on the Little Lakes Road.

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Ball’s bridge was built over the Maitland River in 1885. It is a rare example of a two-span pin-connected Pratt through-truss iron bridge and one of the oldest wrought-iron Pratt bridges in the US and Canada. The bridge was built at a time when horse-drawn carriages and carts were its only traffic. In 2006 the bridge was declared unsafe for the weight of modern vehicles. In 2008, the bridge was saved from further deterioration and eventual destruction by the Friends of Ball’s Bridge.

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The poem below tries to capture the interplay of light and shadow as we crossed Ball’s Bridge and drove the local roads.

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Ball’s Bridge, Maitland River

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on the first day of fall

landscape is criss-crossed

in lattice and wire

spider web and the flight paths

of pigeon-flutter

to the high lines

of the iron bridge

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rays of light

find solar panels

and the backs of turtles

sunning on river logs

the inter-lacing

of dark water and light

the shadows of metal and truss

intercepting wire

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cornfields

and winter wheat

embedded rows

a river and its valley

and a hawk follows

panels of air, first frost

and meltwater collects

on oval lily pads

yellowed leaves

rusted wire

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This is the second metal bridge we have visited in Ontario. A few years ago we photographed the South Nation River Bridge, in Glengarry County, not far from Cornwall. That bridge has been removed, another loss from our built landscape. For the story of our visit to the South Nation River metal bridge click here

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All my best,

Jane Tims

 

 

Written by jane tims

March 16, 2020 at 7:00 am

colour: solemn, sombre

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October in New Brunswick is an explosion of colour. However,  as the red and orange leaves fall, browns and yellows begin to dominate the landscape.

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View of Nerepis marsh looking south. The ferry is crossing the river, barely visible in the mist.

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Colour variety in the marsh grasses.

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Hay-scented fern adds yellows and browns to the ditches.

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solemn, sombre

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walked out to see you

once again as you

lay dying, somber

the soft light, marsh grass

leaning in the rain

autumn colour fades

tones solemn, ochre

of poplar and birch,

straw-pale, hay-scented

fern, Solidago

and tansy, shadows

in the ditch, the heads

of Typha

burst to seed

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Copyright Jane Tims 2019

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Best wishes everyone!

Jane

 

 

Written by jane tims

October 19, 2019 at 7:00 am

Posted in natural history

Tagged with , , , , , , ,

abandoned spaces: remnant plants

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On a drive towards the centre of the province, we found the property below to exemplify what happens to the surrounding vegetation when home sites are abandoned.

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On the property, I could see the old home, the roof fallen in, the tin roof rusted on the half that was not shingled. All around were wildflowers, most noticeable, the fireweed. There were also remnants of cultivated plants:

  • lilac
  • rose bushes
  • hops
  • orange day-lilies

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Street View, Google Earth gives a glimpse of the property back in 2009.

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remnants

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Not meant to sprawl but climb, hops

crouch between grass, fireweed.

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Recline, each five-fingered leaf

with spaces between digits.

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Remnants of pink rose bushes

and an apple tree, apples

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green but plentiful. Lilac

lifts spent and skeletal blooms.

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The two-track road still leads to

back pasture, woodlot beyond.

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Orange day-lilies echo

the rusty reds of tin roof,

the house fallen to decay.

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All my best,

Jane

Written by jane tims

August 6, 2018 at 7:00 am

in the shelter of the covered bridge – through a spider’s web

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April 4, 2015 ‘web’ Jane Tims

 

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web

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after the rain,

says the spider,

I am purveyor of worlds

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peer through my web

800 raindrops

inverse images

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each a replica

of roof, walls and passageway

joists and beams

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loops of lenses

strands of crossing

binocular bracelets

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built a web to catch

the rain? I don’t think so

but insects never came to call

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so I am content

with captured

covered bridges

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swimmers, girls gone fishing

and the occasional

Chevrolet

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Copyright  2015  Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

April 6, 2015 at 7:04 am

how high the snow?

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Last week, we had our first substantial snow. My husband is happy because he plows driveways with his tractor.  I am happy too because the snow makes everything clean and white.

Both of us wish we knew how much snow will fall this winter.  Even the weather station does not make any attempts to guess the snowfall in the coming months.

However, I enjoy the old ways of prediction … my Dad used to say the snow would be as high as the wasps built their nests.  Last week, while walking one of our trails, my husband found a wasp nest at chest height.  Last year, in 2011, there was a wasp nest in our arbour, at a point just above our heads.  Therefore, we have concluded… this year we will have less snow than last.

By April, I should know if this method works!!!!

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prediction

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had a lengthy meeting

before the Queen OK’d the plan

and started the nest – concise, globular,

paper contract with winter

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she ordered us to work,

to strip wood from

the human house next door,

chew the pulp, publish the bulletin

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takes stacks and layers of paperwork

to predict with certainty

where home will be safe and above

the snows of December

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the secret in fine print,

on paper walls –

light grey from the patio fence

dark grey from the shingles

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Copyright  Jane Tims  2012

Written by jane tims

November 14, 2012 at 7:09 am

a moment of beautiful – November leaves

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the space: the November sky

the beautiful: oak leaves, not yet fallen

The oak is one of the last trees to give up its leaves in autumn.

I love the look of oak leaves against the sky.  Individually, their deeply lobed pattern is striking.  As a group, the leaves make a kind of randomly tatted lace.

These leaves are a frail, ineffective barrier to rain and snow, but to me, they are a statement of defiance against the coming winter.

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password

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my palm

and its splayed fingers

against the glass

defy the cold

demand the secret word

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the way the oaks construct

tattered shelters against

November chill, cling to

their leaves, whisper

misinformation

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Copyright  Jane Tims  2012

Written by jane tims

November 12, 2012 at 7:34 am

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