Monday, April 16, 2012

N is for Nature

By Rena J. Traxel
N is for nature.  Nature poetry has been around for centuries.  The Greeks wrote about it in their poems (think of Idylls written by The Greek poet Theocritus).  Nature poetry really started to take hold during the Romantic period when famous poets such as William Blake, William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Lord Byron, and John Keats took to looking around them. They believed in going into nature, observing the world around them and writing about it. If you ever read poetry from the Romantic period you will know that many of those poems commented on the horrible things happening around them.  

Many contemporary nature poets according to are “inspired by the Japanese traditions of Haiku and Renga. (Originally conceived as a short associative meditation on the natural world).” 

What is a nature poem?
According to The Art and Craft of Poetry a nature poem is "a poem in which nature plays an integral role, emphasizing terrain and life (including humans) in a natural setting, season, metaphor, symbol, situation or theme."

As some of you know I live in the country. Now that spring is in the air, I wake up to the birds singing in the trees outside my window.  So when I write nature poems, I tend to write about birds.  Here is a poem I wrote one cold afternoon after spending the morning snapping photos.  I wanted to write a poem about this precious nest I had found that I was sure wasn’t there a year ago. I ended up writing a poem about my own frustrations that came from building a house from scratch.

Abandoned nest in the trees
Covered in snow and frost
Not an ideal place to live
Better than being homeless

--Go into nature and write a poem.
--Look out your window and write a poem about the nature you see around you (even if you live in the city). 
--Using the picture above as a prompt write a poem.
--Write a poem that uses nature as metaphor for the social injustices that you have observed.

Feel free to share your poems in comments below, on your own blog, or in the A to Z poetry Facebook group. 

--To learn more about the different types of poetry click here.
--To read some nature poems click here.

If you liked this post please let others know. Tomorrow, author Kari-Lynn Winters will be joining us. I hope you come back for that. 


  1. Great post Rena. I love writing nature poems, which is setting me up to write a rubbish one today lol.

    1. Me too! I read your poems and they weren't rubbish!

  2. I love nature, too. I usually write silliness, so this is good challenge for me! Nature seems a little more serious, although I tried to add a little fun. Thanks again for a wonderful post and challenge, Rena.

    1. Thanks Penny. I'm going to try to write another one that is a little bit more fun. I don't know why nature poems make me think it needs to be serious.

  3. Great topic today, Rena! My poem is short and sweet:

    I work the soil and dig some holes,
    I gently plant the seeds.

    I water them, then watch and wait,
    but all I get are weeds!

    1. Haha! Last year there was so much rain that all I got were slugs!

      Attack of the Slugs

      I toiled and toiled,
      it rained and rained.
      the slugs came in.

      I sprayed and sprayed,
      they wormed and wormed.
      Don't come back!

    2. Love it! It captures how my husband feels attacking our lawn each year.

  4. Fun and cute poems Lori and Rena!

    Here is mine:

    Pinecones Have Seeds

    It's surface jagged
    Touch it, it pricks
    It loosens it's hold
    As it hangs from it's stick
    It sways and it grows
    It dries and it falls
    Crunch goes it's shell
    The seedlings and all
    Into the ground
    It spreads in the Earth
    Pinecones have seeds
    For a pine tree's rebirth

    1. I like how this poem comes full circle! I like that you have touched on the different senses (touch, sound, etc).

    2. I tried to use some which I often do not. Thanks for noticing :)

    3. This brought me back to Ohio and her crisp winters. Beautiful!

  5. This post had me thinking if musicians followed a similar path. Have you heard Antinio Vivaldi's masterpiece, 'Four Seasons?' If you haven't give it a listen (You Tube maybe) and see if it isn't akin to the romantic poets theme of nature.

  6. Sometimes i spend all day inside and forget there's more to life. Thanks for the reminder.

    Moody Writing
    The Funnily Enough

  7. I admit it, I am not the best poet so I will pass on you're challenge, but I did enjoy the post and your poem and some of the above bloggers who contributed have done very well. Very entertaining.

    1. Thanks. I'm hosting a poetry challenge along side the A to Z challenge so the above bloggers are part of that challenge.

  8. Busy, bodies

    Tail switches.
    Nose twitches.
    Head tilts__


    Zips across
    tangled moss.
    Hangs on__


  9. Nature poems are based on natural themes and human emotions with a combination of colors, feelings and rhythm.


Thanks for your comments. Remember to keep them kid friendly.