Autumn Play

squirrels summersault
beneath the sweet
gum tree
snow white bellies
into the wet air
a blaze of gold & crimson
in a rush of wind
plummeting to the ground

(c) Mary Harrison,  1012


rain hits the window
the red fence turns brown
I feed the dogs  go
back to bed  the space
heater goes on  the house
is quiet  ants
the rim of the bowl–
a procession
of pilgrims
at the holy land

(c) Mary Harrison, 2012

Autumn Morning

no more bleeding
in the garden
sorrow waits
last leaves
joyous birdsong
unmasks silence
sun snakes slither
through the hurt
opening the world

(c) Mary Harrison, 2012



I hold my dying dog
and cry
stars fall from the sky


losing my dog–
through tears
a Van Gogh sky


leash hanging over the door
empty leather collar
blue sky, crisp air


push back sorrow
letting the now
swallow what was


sickbed bath
warmth of the water
gentle hands


Father Mike
brings communion
whirr of the ceiling fan


early autumn morning
little yellow sky dances
through the trees


sitting in the sun
a squirrel leaps
onto the bird bath


philodendron dying
in the sun
Sister Elizabeth
sings a hymn


little dancing girls
dressed in satin
Pennies From Heaven


walking through snow
for a letter–
world war II


blind and deaf dog
walking down the hall
walls lead the way


brittle bones
pay attention
to my step


the moth flaps its wings
circling the lampshade
drawn to the light


October wind
the leaves are having
a bad hair day


all haiku (c) Beneath Our Feet by Mary Harrison 2012

I’ve driven to Rhode Island
in my blue Century Buick
to hear the tide rush in
and watch the waves.
But I’m too late.
The tide’s going out;
the beach is deserted.

I press my feet deep
into the ocean bed;
pebbles and sea-weed
slap my ankles while I look
at the foaming
and listen to seagulls
screeching for food.
I have nothing to give.

Stinging cold water
grips the marrow of bones
in my feet and legs
and chills my spine.
The hurt goes deep.
I start for shore but stop
to feel the cold again.
I need to feel
even this ache
so I’ll know I’m alive.

(c) Mary Harrison, Kansas Quarterly, 1990