A writer inspired by nature and human nature

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Write a Winter Haiku & Get the Kids Writing Too! —”Snowfalls” (Haiku from MY MAINE) by Bette A. Stevens


Enjoying another snow day at the farmstead in central Maine. This haiku is from my current work in progressMY MAINE, Haiku Through the Seasonsa poetry collection schedule to be released early in 2019. The photo of field and forest (taken from the back patio at the farmstead) inspired me to write today’s featured haiku. “Snowfalls” is a verse from the WINTER TALES section. Wherever you are, whatever the season, I invite you to get outdoors and get inspired. Join the fun and write a seasonal haiku about what’s inspiring you. It’s easy as 1-2-3… You’ll find the definition and descriptive details of writing haiku below. If the kids are around, make it a family affair—they’ll love it!

SNOWFALLS

Silently—snowfalls

Reign over field and forest

Supremely sovereign

~Bette A. Stevens

HAIKU

noun hai·ku \ˈhī-(ˌ)kü\
  1. :  an unrhymed verse form of Japanese origin having three lines containing usually five, seven, and five syllables respectively; also :  a poem in this form usually having a seasonal reference — compare tanka

Discover more about how to write haiku and other poetry:

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MY MAINE “Winter Tales” (Haiku selections) from Bette A. Stevens’s WIP


This upcoming collection of haiku reflects the Maine I know and love. Here is a sampling of several stanzas from the section Winter Tales. I hope you enjoy them and would appreciate your comments. I plan to edit and format the collection during the holiday season, and hope to publish my first poetry book—MY MAINE, Haiku through the Seasons—early in 2019. ~Bette A. Stevens, Maine author 

Winter Tales

(Selected samples from MY MAINE, Haiku Through the Seasons by Bette A. Stevens)

Winter genie waves
Its icy crystal scepter
Dawn’s magic appears

Silvery branches
Read a charmed folktale
A spellbound story

Pine cones and tassels
Mirrored in moonlight upon
White weighted branches

Chickadees dozing
Nestling, captive till
Morning sets them free

Shovels and snow plows
Storm’s ravings unraveled
Till the next arrives

Soups, stews and chowders
Stories told round the table
Favored winter fare

The sundial declares
Dwindling days this season
When nightfall looms large

Neighbors helping hands
Gifts from the heart most cherished
As storm clouds gather

Families and friends
Make merry through this season
Knee deep in snow

Thanks so much for taking time to read these selected verses from MY MAINE, Haiku Through the Seasons. I look forward to hearing your thoughts about them as I continue work on the collection. Wishing everyone a blessed and beautiful Holiday Season. ~Bette A. Stevens, Maine author

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Guest author: Bette A. Stevens ~ My Maine … a new book!


I’m working on my new book—MY MAINE, Haiku through the seasons and hope to release my haiku collection before year’s end. AUTHORS: Are you launching a new book? Be sure to check out author/blogger Sue Vincent’s gracious offer to lend a hand. You’ll find it at the end of this post. Be sure to click through… Sue and I would love to hear from you. Thanks. ~Bette A. Stevens, Maine author

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo


My upcoming collection of haiku reflects the Maine I know and love. Here is a sampling of several stanzas from the section Autumn Leaves. I hope you enjoy them and would appreciate your comments. I plan to have the entire collection edited, formatted and published before year’s end. ~Bette A. Stevens, Maine author 

Autumn Leaves

(Selected samples fromMY MAINE, Haiku Through the Seasons by Bette A. Stevens)

Washed across woodlands
Blazing brush transforms the world
Into a canvas

Church steeples flashing
Like beacons across mural
Of the Master’s hand

Climb to the summit
Ascending steep timbered trails
Foliage at peak

Crispy, crunchy leaves
Frolic in the wind
Carnival classics

Skycastle ensigns—
Clever couriers announce
The coming tempest

Harvesting, mulching
Gardener’s work never done
But oh, the rewards

Cinnamon, nutmeg
Pumpkin confections abound
Connoisseur’s delight 

Window panes clatter
Leaves scatter in the whirlwind
Green fields turned umber

Drifting off…

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MY MAINE “Autumn Leaves” (Haiku selections) from Bette A. Stevens’s WIP


My upcoming collection of haiku reflects the Maine I know and love. Here is a sampling of several stanzas from the section Autumn Leaves. I hope you enjoy them and would appreciate your comments. I plan to have the entire collection edited, formatted and published before year’s end. ~Bette A. Stevens, Maine author 

Autumn Leaves

(Selected samples from MY MAINE, Haiku Through the Seasons by Bette A. Stevens)

Washed across woodlands
Blazing brush transforms the world
Into a canvas

Church steeples flashing
Like beacons across mural
Of the Master’s hand

Climb to the summit
Ascending steep timbered trails
Foliage at peak

Crispy, crunchy leaves
Frolic in the wind
Carnival classics

Skycastle ensigns—
Clever couriers announce
The coming tempest

Harvesting, mulching
Gardener’s work never done
But oh, the rewards

Cinnamon, nutmeg
Pumpkin confections abound
Connoisseur’s delight 

Window panes clatter
Leaves scatter in the whirlwind
Green fields turned umber

Drifting off to sleep
Reposing in tawny beds
Autumn leaves at rest

Thanks so much for taking time to read these selected verses from MY MAINE, Haiku Through the Seasons. I look forward to hearing your thoughts about them as I continue work on the collection. Wishing everyone a blessed and beautiful autumn. ~Bette A. Stevens, Maine author

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Write a 🎃 Halloween Haiku 🎃 & Get the Kids Writing Too!


Write a Halloween Haiku & Get the Kids Writing Too!

BLACK CAT, A Halloween Haiku (inspired by Midnight, our fabulous furry feline). ~Bette A. Stevens, Maine author

Meet Midnight—The fabulous furry feline who inspired me to write BLACK CAT, a 🎃Halloween haiku🎃 (Haiku: a Japanese-inspired three-line: 5-7-5 syllable poetry form).

Midnight’s grooming table is decked out for each season or holiday and she loves it. I designed this year’s poster using a photo I took of Midnight resting on her grooming table here at the farmstead in central Maine. She’s a kitty who loves to hunt for spiders (one of her favorite treats). After taking the photo and writing the haiku, I added text plus spider and web graphics, then added a frame to make a poster. Kids of all ages enjoy writing and  illustrating their own poetry. It makes a great family activity too. 

What’s inspiring you this Halloween?
Brainstorm your list and get writing.
🎃Have fun—don’t forget to get the kids writing too!

Here are some writer’s tricks (literary devices found in every writer’s toolbox) I used to create BLACK CAT. These tools can set a mood— they make writing and reading memorable and fun.  Check them out and see if you can discover where I used them in my poem.

Read on to find out more about these literary devices.

BLACK CAT (haiku) by Bette A. Stevens

Black cat waits, watches…
Stalking tricksters in their web.
Spiders are her treats!

Three Writer’s Tricks (Literary devices used in writing poetry and prose)

Assonance
Assonance is the repetition of vowel sounds in nearby words.

Consonance
Another literary device used by writers and poets is consonance. It is the repetition of the final consonant sounds, usually in the more important words or in the accented syllables.

Alliteration
You put your alliteration tool to work when words that start with the same sound are used close together in a phrase or sentence. The sound is usually a consonant and the words don’t have to always be right next to one another.

Finding “just the right words”
Abundant resources are available in print as well as through online searches. Listed below are the two resources I had readily available in the classroom for my students (Grades 4-8). Paperbacks are inexpensive enough to have multiple copies available, and in my opinion, they are indispensable.

  • The Scholastic Rhyming Dictionary by Sue Young
  • Webster’s Thesaurus for Students by Merriam-Webster

                        🎃 Happy Writing and Reading Haiku

                                    & Happy Halloween 🎃

                     ~ Bette A. Stevens, Maine author/illustrator

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“Time to get the apples in” (POEM) by Bette A Stevens


Inspired by nature and human nature…

In 2002 we planted five apple trees (Granny Smith, Greening, Red Rome, Cortland and Macoun) forming an apple tree crescent between the house and barn here at The Farmstead in central Maine. This year we’ve harvested six bushels from the trees, and our ‘neighborhood’ deer have cleaned up all the drops. No need to bend, rake and set out the fallen fruit for the wildlife, they’ve already harvested their seasonal snacks. No need to travel to the local orchard or market to pick and purchase apples.
Wishing you a bountiful and beautiful fall!
~ Bette A. Stevens, Maine author

Time to Get the Apples In

Poem by Bette A. Stevens

Pies, cobblers, jellies, cider, applesauce and more…
To make and bake
To eat and partake
From our garden
Not the store

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“Autumnal Archway” (HAIKU) by Bette A. Stevens


Autumnal Archway

Haiku by Bette A. Stevens

Summer gate closes
As autumn’s brilliant archway
Beckons—nature’s call

© Bette A. Stevens, Maine author

About the author

Maine author Bette A. Stevens pictured with a male Monarch butterfly drying its wings after emerging from its chrysalis.

Inspired by nature and human nature, author Bette A. Stevens is a retired elementary and middle school teacher, a wife, mother of two and grandmother of five. Stevens lives in Central Maine with her husband on their 37-acre farmstead where she enjoys reading, writing, gardening, walking and reveling in the beauty of nature. She advocates for children and families, for childhood literacy and for the conservation of monarch butterflies—an endangered species (and for milkweed, the only plant that monarch caterpillars will eat).

Stevens is the author of AMAZING MATILDA, an award-winning picture book about a monarch butterfly; The Tangram Zoo and Word Puzzles Too!, a home/school resource  incorporating hands-on math and writing; and PURE TRASH, the short story prequel to her début novel, DOG BONE SOUP—a coming-of-age story and family drama set in 1950s and 60s New England.

Stevens is currently working on her first poetry book—MY MAINE, a seasonal haiku collection—which she plans to publish fall (2018).

 

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