As the saying goes, “The bigger they are, the harder they fall.” Another states, “It’s not how far you fall, it’s how high you bounce back.” Today, celebrating the “one week anniversary” of the First Day of Fall (Autumn) 2018, we are considering the word “FALL.”  Be it the season, or the process of hitting the pavement, we are looking for a FALL poem under the following consideration:

During the two week period between Sunday October 14 to and including Saturday October 27, we will be conducting a Mini-Poem-A-Day Chapbook Exercise in preparation for the November Poem-a-Day Chapbook Challenge being conducted by Robert Lee Brewer over at the Poetic Asides poetry blog. Each poem will be included in your final effort.

Your Mini-chapbook theme will be “AUTUMN” with a daily prompt being something in that regard. Today’s poem title will be the title of your chapbook and will be the first poem in your mini-tome. All successive poems in the challenge will have a relation to or be driven by this first piece in some way beyond just being a Fall poem. Also you will be required to use a line from the previous poem to thread the string. So think about your title and write that poem today, and we’ll play poet in a major way starting on the 14th.


Fall of My Heart (Sonnet for Autumn)

Way back, when I was just a little girl
My heart fell hard and fast for autumn’s charms.
As summer ends, the joys of fall unfurl,
With football, marching bands, and pumpkin farms.

Drum cadence seems to beat within my chest
As scarlet, gold, and ginger grace our trees.
The scents of burning leaves, and apples pressed,
Or baked ‘tween flaky crusts, give me weak knees.

When sun shines full in autumn’s deep blue sky,
Or harvest moon looms larger than my home,
It simply leaves me breathless. My-oh-my,
I cannot paint my fondness in a poem.

I have this wish –  believe me, it’s sincere –
I wish fall lingered ten more months per year.

© Marie Elena Good, 2018



AS THE DAYS DWINDLE,  by Walter J Wojtanik

I hear Roger Williams play
as the days dwindle –
and we’re searching for kindling
and strong Oolong tea brews.
The leaves become the hue of a barn fire,
they take a flyer and are tossed;
lost upon them is their imminent demise.
Gracefully, they drift past the window
as Roger Williams plays.
Tree branches sway in the breeze
pleased to be rid of the molting
vegetation in sad celebration.
The falling leaves of red
and gold embossed with
nature’s time stamp, to be trampled upon
and piled up, hours wiled away –
kids at play. And Roger Williams too.
Summer kisses soon forgotten,
hands once sun-burned and gnarled
beat a retreat and go away, winter’s song
plays. But, I miss you most of all my darling,
when Roger Williams plays.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018


141 thoughts on “PROMPT #217 – OH, HOW THE MIGHTY HAVE FALLEN

  1. Falling In Love All Over Again

    It’s happening again
    My love affair with summer
    Is beginning to wane and
    My heart is being slyly stolen

    By cool nights made for reading
    And warm apple cider
    The trees are hinting at the
    Changes coming – reds and
    Vibrant yellows and mellow oranges
    A show of true colors that
    Make my soul pause in adoration
    It’s happening again

    To this devotee of the sun’s
    Brilliance – this lover of nights
    Perfumed with honeysuckle
    I am seduced by this changeling

    and I’m falling in love all over again


    oh, this is going to be fun!

  2. I’ve never done a prompt like this before, so I look forward to the experience. Here is my starter poem, using the viator form again (I like it)

    Into every life fall must come—
    Unless one dies too young—
    Nimble fingers become all thumbs
    What once was short now takes so long

    Tree trunk steady if leaves must drop
    Into every life fall must come
    Brilliant record of various crops
    Giv’n as leavings others find plum

    Only I know family’s sum
    I heard my mum, my son heard me
    Into every life fall must come
    Nuts grow tall not far from my tree

    I may long for heavenly home
    Where spirit air will fill my lungs
    From there I’ll never again roam
    Into every life fall must come

  3. Well, there is sadness in fall – at least to me – there is no bleaker time of year than November. Weather wise. I’m hoping to show the advantages of growing older with an occasional nod to the difficulties of being nursing-home bound


    In my dreams, sometimes I fly
    soaring above the trees
    above my problems
    above my abilities.

    But sometimes I dream I am falling
    through the clouds
    through my life
    through my opportunities.

    Perhaps the only difference
    is that sometimes
    I have the belief
    that I will fly and not fall.

  5. Oh, the fall

    when the mighty crash through their images
    and fall from their pedestals
    as Humpty Dumpty fell from his wall
    breaking into thousands of pieces
    that no one can pick up
    or put back together again
    not even the king’s men

    What is done is done
    they’re not God, after all
    just faltering humans
    who break up and fall apart

    Have we put them there
    on that pedestal?

    Unlike the rest of us who strive
    day after day
    not to break into hundreds and thousands of pieces

    we wonder how they can be so perfect
    so shiny and glowing
    how their armour doesn’t crack
    and their smile doesn’t fade
    but we don’t see all
    since we’re not God

    if they choose
    –and we choose–
    to try again, day after day
    hour after hour
    to reflect God’s image again
    redeemed by a love we cannot earn

    Carolyn Wilker

  6. Opera of Orange

    Orange opens your mouth, an Ah!
    Happy to say, like cha-cha-cha.
    Kid birthdays with orange soda–
    that fizz voila! That fizz voila!

    Pumpkin patches where you can pick,
    and candy corn that makes you sick.
    Leaves tinged orange fall like magic.
    Our cameras click! Our cameras click!

    Orange called a Cara Cara,
    red inside, is loved by Sara.
    Autumn colors sing like opera.
    Just can’t top her! Just can’t top her!

  7. All Fall Down

    The rich
    The famous
    The powerful
    The guilty
    The innocent
    The feeble
    And the false gods
    Just to name a few

    All fall down

  8. Autumns of Childhood

    When young, we played outdoors—snow, rain or shine.
    Somehow despite all weather, we felt fine.
    We loved the summer days and all the rest.
    But autumns in bright colors were the best.

    In winters, we’d build snowmen and we’d sled.
    We’d play in our snow forts till time for bed.
    We had snow fights. In layers we were dressed.
    But autumns in bright colors were the best.

    In springtime, we would ride our bikes with glee.
    And splash in puddles, oh-so merrily.
    We watched for the first robin with red breast.
    But autumns in bright colors were the best.

    In summers, we would wade around in creeks.
    We’d run without our shoes for many weeks.
    Our stamina-adults were most impressed.
    But autumns in bright colors were the best.

    In autumn, we raked leaves and jumped in piles.
    We gathered nuts and biked the country miles.
    With tangy air and apples, we felt blessed.
    Yes, autumn in bright colors were the best.

  9. Autumn of My Years

    A thought arises, lingers not, departs,
    as our summer too soon becomes the fall.
    This is true in writing, in all the arts.
    A thought arises, lingers not, departs.
    We must soon act on what is in our hearts,
    lest we would forget, lose our soul, our all.
    A thought arises, lingers not, departs,
    as our summer too soon becomes the fall.

  10. I don’t plan to use this one as my base poem for this challenge, but it was the first to come to mind… written when I turned ‘old’ at the ripe age of 36.

    When I was young
    I Loved the fall
    With stately Oaks
    so strong and tall
    In somber colors,
    Gold and brown
    Dropping leaves of wisdom down.
    Now I am old
    And Best is spring
    When New Things grow
    and Young Things sing
    with Hues of vibrant
    Brilliant green,
    Songs of life and Hopes of being.

    (c) Damon Dean, 1989

  11. Autumn in the Twenty-First Century

    It is Autumn this morning,
    the hummingbirds have left
    and the blue jays have commenced to swear.
    It is Autumn this morning.
    There is no trace of hummingbirds.
    We have nothing to do with that,
    the bluebirds swear.
    There will be rain,
    the rain will dry up.
    Summer will come back for a few days.

    An earthquake and tsunami,
    the ground rotated
    like a cyclone.
    According to one survivor,
    the ground itself
    turned like a wheel.
    Volcanos in Hawaii
    pumping rock out of the ground.

    We imagined the future
    and drank from Tupperware.
    We thought the twenty-first century
    would be free from greasy Tupperware.
    Now the world is in our pockets
    and the world is full of danger.

    Autumn rain is like a blanket
    and the earth is like a cup.
    Today a torn and dirty blanket
    fills a cracked, chipped,
    lip-cutting hand-me-down cup.
    If I could read its dirty tea leaves
    what would it warn me of?

  12. I can’t imagine writing a poem a day! Goodness. I have had this prompt running around in my head and struggled to come up with anything. Can’t wait to go through and read what you experienced poets wrote!


    Leaves glimmer orange
    Hair shimmers white
    the fall of the year
    the fall of her life
    Flowers wilt
    People fade
    Spring will come
    Heaven awaits.

    • The trick to writing a poem a day is that you aren’t writing a POEM, but a draft. You get the ideas down before they slip away. Sometimes they are awful. Often they are awful. If you think of it, you can leave yourself notes about what you intended, but more often when you get around to the revision, you revise what you got and not what you intended. If you get two good drafts in a week, it’s more than if you were waiting for enough time to write well. Think of it as play.

    • Oh my friend, you’ve captured so much here. Seasons of weather. Seasons of life. Love this!

      And yes, Barbara gave you a great explanation and tips for P.A.D. challenges. And also, please know there is no obligation to even draft a poem every day! Join in if you like, when you like, and when the prompts inspire.

      My very first introduction to writing poetry was the April P.A.D challenge at the Writer’s Digest. Robert Lee Brewer (the WD poetry editor) hosts one on his blog (Poetic Asides) every April. He also hosts his November Chapbook Challenge every November. April and November are great fun, but they also are called “challenges” for a reason. 😉

  13. Attempt #2 (how many times can I try?) :


    The prick of the needle, the poison, it calls.
    She fights hard against it, aware it ain’t right
    knows the poison will carry her deep into night,
    She pleads and she cries, answers truth to its lies.
    In weakness, self-loathing, she gives in, gets high.
    She trips, she stumbles, she crumbles, she falls
    when the prick of the needle, the poison, it calls.

    • Here’s our little secret. Our policy is this: We’d like you to try the prompt as written, BUT what we really expect is for you to write something. If we can get you to write a poem (any poem), we’ve done our job. We are of the process of poetry. We consider poem a verb (as in, “we’re going to poem today!”) And you came to the write guy. You can try as often as you see fit. There is no penalty for being prolific.

      • Walt, thanks for sharing the secret! I tried the prompt as written over and over and over…and this is what kept coming. Kind of surprising that I fall short at coming up with anything autumn when it is my favorite time of year! Also, there is a mistake in my poem. I have heard you are some sort of wizard at fixing such things. The end of the fourth line is supposed to read “its lies”…if you could?? Please?

    • The prick of the needle, the poison it calls.
      She trips, she stumbles, she crumbles, she falls
      into the arms of the One who loves her and calls
      louder than needle pricks, poison or sin.
      He defeats poison’s claims, and is where freedom begins.
      In His strength and His power she learns how to stand
      when the poison, the needle prick on her heart makes demands.

      **Out of my distress I called on the Lord; the Lord answered me and set me free. Psalm 91:14-15

    • Sweet friend, do you know how much I love you? You are so very strong. Your poetic voice is coming through beautifully. And you know what? You have captured the heart of poetry, right here. “Fall” can have many meanings. If you want an “autumn” chapbook, different types of falls can be incorporated into it. And as Walt said, the prompts are getting you writing. And that’s the idea behind them. They prompt the heart and mind (and often spirit) to write whatever the prompts “prompt” them to. For me, that’s part of the beauty of poetry and poetry prompts. ❤


    Orange and yellow
    drift by in the breeze,
    lending a mellow
    enchantment to trees
    soon barren of leaf;
    the sight hints at grief

    but spring will return
    and leafing will follow
    and warmth will not spurn
    the pasture and hollow.
    The trees, in reprieve,
    no longer need grieve.

  15. Stars Don’t Fall

    real stars,
    do not fall. Stars
    ever fall.

    of skies,
    orbits die, stones
    from space
    tumble, fly.

    as well,
    man-made things leave
    their paths,

    and fires,
    lose desires. Burn
    to ash,
    funeral pyres.

    real stars,
    burning still. Stars
    shine on.
    On, until,

    they must
    fade in place. Falls,
    or fades,
    all things must face.

    © Damon Dean, 2018

  16. Two weeks late and a dollar short! But, I’m here now! OK – Got to write something backwards so that it will work OK with what we already did …here goes:


    The sun had climbed high beyond the peak of evergreen.
    We squinted searching for the heralds’ blazing colors.
    As if kindergarteners were let loose with paints,
    blushes of garnet, melting into salmon
    alongside splashes of saffron and titian gold,
    speckled the landscape.
    Like tourists eager to capture the once in a lifetime moment,
    we rush to eternalize each synthesized branch,
    knowing it will fade,
    as quickly as we blink our blurry eyes
    on this crisp autumn noon.

    (c) 2018 Linda M. Rhinehart Neas

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