Monday, April 3, 2017

National Poetry Month: ‘Barter’ by Sara Teasdale

In honor of National Poetry Month and a nice sunny day here in Oregon, here is one of my favorite poems by Sara Teasdale:


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Life has loveliness to sell,
     All beautiful and splendid things,
Blue waves whitened on a cliff,
     Soaring fire that sways and sings,
And children’s faces looking up
Holding wonder like a cup.

Life has loveliness to sell,
     Music like a curve of gold,
Scent of pine trees in the rain,
     Eyes that love you, arms that hold,
And for your spirit’s still delight,
Holy thoughts that star the night.

Spend all you have for loveliness,
     Buy it and never count the cost;
For one white singing hour of peace
     Count many a year of strife well lost,
And for a breath of ecstasy
Give all you have been, or could be.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016



yellow ginkgo leaves,
fluttering like paper fans
painted by sunlight


Friday, September 30, 2016

You Fall Leaf

You Fall Leaf

The fall—its colors and smells—
and you, brown leaf, individuated
yet undistinguished,
fell from your parent tree to rest
on bleak concrete.
Among your ruddy fellows,
among plastic bags,
gray safety pins,
and orange spray-painted glyphs,
the crisp sunlight curls you and
autumn enters.
An academy of gray squirrels
bustle about you,
collecting their compulsions.
The eternity of summer’s greens
end for you.
Drivers in vans ignore you.
(They carry no cash.)
Will a black cackling crow peck you
to collect a twig?
Will you dance
at night, with a dirty plastic spoon?
Will a child add you
to a science project?
You, impermanent, will crumble:
the dust from whence you grew
will reclaim you, in time,
while you become
a significant insignificant
in the sights and smells of fall.