Posted by: Thomas Drinkard | September 23, 2015

Advice to Poets about the Beginning of Fall

I wrote this several years ago, because I’d been seeing poets/writers using images and words about Fall that they “stole” from other writers/poets.  No plagiarism, just unconscious repetition.

Happy Autumn, folks.


Autumn Caveat


“It’s mornings like this;
The stingy sun trying to hold back
Even the warmth of its reflection
Flashing cold fire in the lake.
When November leaves drop in sudden gusts,
Like a red and yellow flock of birds
Swooping at once to ground.
Or even nights:
When winds reach wet hands
To take you spinning with random paper
Down back street gutters, under straining bridges
To clogged rivers.
It’s this:
The time of year, along with spring,
When poets must take care
Not to sing the same songs
Stolen from tribal memory.”
–   Thomas R. Drinkard


  1. Love the poem and your timing. No question that autumn is my favorite season of the year. Like your choice of metaphors and similes, if only I can avoid spouting tired old verses mimicking the ancients.

    • I’d heard folks reading their Fall poems at a meeting. It seemed like they’d all just read the same books.

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