Friday, January 30, 2015




The recent blanketing of snow is just what I've been waiting for. Not because I like to shovel, but because it's the perfect time to share a snowy day poem. With her permission, I'm sharing Diane Mayr's poem, her gift to me for the Winter Poem Swap along with a delicious poetry collection entitled The Bees, by British Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy. How lucky for me that Diane took a break from her amazing Kud-dos to Emily project to participate in the Winter Poem Swap. Keep an eye on her blog Random Noodling for haiku paired with Emily Dickinson's poetry.

 "A Snowy Monday," a painting by New Hampshire artist Lilla Cabot Perry, inspired the poem of the same title. It's a series of haiku, but perhaps it's also a modern haiga because Diane, so practiced in this art, paired her poem with the painting. And that makes me think it's also an ekphrastic poem!

A Snowy Monday

early morning
silence before
the snow plow

snow day
no good reason not to
have another cup

they check
the root cellar 
for a nose

from the safety
of a snowy hemlock
house sparrows scold

a little color
into the day

radiator clink
the smell of wet wool

         ~dmayr says "While the haiku and the painting in a haiga share the same space, they are meant to complement, and not explain, one another." And the poem "A Snowy Monday" does just that. The eye takes in a scene so familiar to those of us who live in the north, while the ear hears the plow rumbling by, birds chattering, the radiator churning out heat, and the nose inhales the aroma of brewed coffee or tea. It's the last olfactory detail that really makes me love this poem. It brought me right back to my childhood -  "the smell of wet wool mittens."

Skip over to These 4 Corners for the Poetry Roundup. Thanks, Paul!


  1. Such a lovely sensory poem. You're right -- Diane does such a great job of pairing art with words. Love this one!

  2. I love this! Especially checking the root cellar for a nose. Diane did a great job...thanks for sharing!

  3. I'm such a fan of Diane's haiga– this one being no exception. Love the scolding house sparrows, the knitting of color, the clink of the radiator, and of course that delicious winter smell of heated wet mittens!

  4. Thanks, Joyce, for understanding me so well! As for the explanation, it's right on the money. I like to think of a haiga as being like a good picture book. The text and the illustrations may be able to stand on their own, but put together, they become something richer and more meaningful. Are you ready for the next bit of white? Coming soon to a NH town near you!

  5. Lovely, lovely, lovely--but I admit that it took me several minutes to figure out the nose stanza! I guess it's been too long since I built a snowman!

  6. Very nice. I love the combination here. I, too, got stuck on the nose, but building a snowman in the Deep South only happens about once every ten years!

  7. I'm loving all the winter poems - this daughter of the sun and tropical girl sends you light and slivers of sunshine.

  8. Beautiful pairing of poetry and painting, Diane and Joyce. We are supposed to get a significant (for Maryland) snowfall tonight. Other people are stocking food. I'm checking my yarn supply.

    a little color
    into the day


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