My Treasuring Poetry guest today is talented author and poet M J Mallon. I am delighted to host Marje here and hope you enjoy her thoughts on poetry and her favourite poem.
Which of your own poems is your favourite?
This was such a difficult decision, I have at least three favourites! I narrowed it down to the robin. The robin and the dragonfly are my spirit animals and trees are also a huge inspiration. I’ve written about all of these and more in Mr. Sagittarius.
So, tame you rest,
Beside me robin,
Two friends on a park bench,
One human, one of nature,
I appreciate your kind time,
Until you away… exploring far,
Hinting at possibilities you go.
I wonder what you notice in your world.
And why you choose that ground to explore,
When you could have stayed here with me,
In mindful meditation.
Maybe you’ll visit me,
Christmas day, perhaps?
To bring good cheer,
Peace to, You.
What inspired you to write this particular poem?
I’d been studying mindfulness at the sixth form college where I work. Mindfulness is the act of observing and using the full array of our senses meditatively to become more at one with ourselves. I’ve discovered that this is a fantastic practice to adhere to. It benefits an author’s creativity by making you more aware of the nuances of your surroundings. I’m fortunate in that I work near the botanical gardens in Cambridge, so I often visit and walk and observe the wonder of nature taking photographs of the trees, flowers, animal and insect visitors. Over time, I collected these photographs and wrote poems about them. These, along with various seasonal and short pieces of fiction feature in Mr. Sagittarius. It is a joyful celebration of siblings, magic, loves, nature, the seasons and the circle of our lives.
Which genre of poetry do you enjoy writing the most and why?
I love writing poetry about life in all its vibrant colours. I am often inspired by photography, (I am a keen amateur photographer – my grandfather and uncle were professional photographers,) or I use images I discover as prompts, often via Colleen Chesebro’s poetry challenge: https://wordcraftpoetry.com/
Specifically, I enjoy writing poems about nature, trees, flowers, love and Halloween! Halloween poems also feature in Mr. Sagittarius. Halloween is an autumnal activity, (and often a childhood one,) so it links well with the seasonal/circle of life, aspect of my poetry writing.
Which genre of poetry do you enjoy reading the most?
I enjoy reading short form poetry. It is so expressive and brilliant. I love how short verses of poetry convey so much detail in so few words. I enjoy haiku, and tanka, as well as poems that form a pattern on the page. I also enjoy longer forms as you will see from my choice of favourite poem.
What is your favourite poem?
I have always loved Ode To Autumn by John Keats. I can almost taste the words. They are magnificent—that first line: Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness —draws you in and makes you long to read more.
Ode To Autumn by John Keats
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.
Mr Sagittarius by M J Mallon
About Mr Sagittarius
Twin brothers Harold and William love the magic of the natural world.
When Harold dies he leaves a simple memorial request.
Will his brother William and his sister Annette honour it?
Or, will the garden work its magic to ensure that they do.
A magical story expressed via an original compilation of poetry and prose with photographic images.
#Poetry #Prose #Photography #NaturalWorld #Trees #Magic #Spirit #Animals #CircleofLife #Humour #Halloween #Cats #Buddha
My review of Mr Sagittarius
Mr Sagittarius is a beautiful collection of poems and short stories, set in the lovely gardens of Cambridge and linked by the visits and experiences of a family of twin brothers and their younger sister.
The story starts with William visiting the weeping willow tree in the garden, a place that was special to his twin brother, Harold, who has recently passed away. William sees Harold’s spirit in a dragonfly that he chats to and finds solace in their one-sided communication.
This is a few lines from a poem about the dragonfly:
“Ancient, sweet fellow
Sacred magic bestower,
Change tumbling on fragile wings.”
When William returns home, he has an altercation with his sister, Annette. During their spat Annette reveals that she has always felt left out and overlooked by her twin brothers. This revelation leads to William and Annette becoming closer and visiting the garden together. Not long after, William passes on and Annette is left alone. She visits the garden and communicates with the spirits of both her brothers over the course of the rest of her long life.
The visits of the siblings to the garden are captured in lovely verse. This is an example I really enjoyed:
“I dream in colour
But now everything is dark
Where has the light gone?
Oh, cruel leafy canopy,
No green meadow, just blue thoughts.”
My favourite of the short stories was The Old Man of Snow and The Snow Snake. This is a story about making good choices in life and rejecting greed. I enjoyed the tale and the descriptive writing.
Mr Sagittarius is a gorgeous book full of delightfully depictive poems and short stories and decorated with striking photographs. This is a book that lovers of poetry, mystery, and wonder will love.
Purchase Mr Sagittarius: Poetry and Prose
About M J Mallon
I am a diverse author who blogs at: https://mjmallon.com. My interests include writing, poetry, photography, and alternative therapies. My favourite genres to write are: Fantasy YA, Paranormal, Ghost and Horror Stories and I love writing various forms of poetry and micro poetry – haiku and Tanka and flash fiction.
I am proud to be included in the best selling horror anthology Nightmareland which received best seller status with best-selling author Dan Alatorre at the helm.
It is one of my greatest pleasures to read and I have written over 100 reviews: https://mjmallon.com/2015/09/28/a-z-of-my-book-reviews/
About Robbie Cheadle
Robbie Cheadle is a children’s author and poet.
The Sir Chocolate children’s picture books, co-authored by Robbie and Michael Cheadle, are written in sweet, short rhymes which are easy for young children to follow and are illustrated with pictures of delicious cakes and cake decorations. Each book also includes simple recipes or biscuit art directions which children can make under adult supervision.
Robbie has also published books for older children which incorporate recipes that are relevant to the storylines.
Robbie writes a monthly series for https://writingtoberead.com called Growing Bookworms. This series discusses different topics relating to the benefits of reading to children.
Robbie has a blog, https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/ where she shares book reviews, recipes, author interviews, and poetry.
Find Robbie Cheadle
Instagram: Robbie Cheadle – Instagram
Facebook: Sir Chocolate Books
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