When Autumn Comes Around Each Year

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The Writing Challenge

Recently a fellow hubber Carb Diva (Linda) issued a writing challenge as follows: "Your prompt is this photograph of a country road. Perhaps you have walked this path many times; do the colors, sights, and sounds of the autumn woods bring you peace and contentment? Or, is this a place you have never been before; what lies beyond the bend in the road?

I think that’s all you’ll need to get started. Let your imagination take you down the path, and start writing."


Most of the responses I have read so far have been essays reflecting on childhood memories and the Autumn season or short stories. Although I love the photo I had some trouble finding the inspiration necessary to write a hub using it as a prompt. It seems I was meant to write another hub first "Mr Humble." As soon as I had finished and published that, I sat down with Linda's photo of the country road and this time had no problem finding inspiration. For my response I have decided to write a poem. This may be a little different to what you expect. I hope you enjoy the read.

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When Autumn Comes Around Each Year

The colours of the country lane,

Warm Autumn hues assault my brain.

Red and yellow, copper too,

All fill my mind with thoughts of you.


Teenage memories unfurl,

Hand in hand with my sweet girl.

A stolen kiss beneath the trees,

The pledge I made on bended knees.


We thought our lives were right on track,

Not contemplating turning back.

Best friends as children, courting teens,

To wed one day was both our dreams.

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stock footage | Source

Then something happened, unforeseen

That changed for us what may have been.

The townsfolk stoked the rumour mill,

Gossip spread like fire uphill.


Looking back it's like a dream,

Beyond the bend, the running stream.

We'd walked, they say, a country mile,

So stopped to wade for just awhile.


Then suddenly you've fallen in!

I didn't know you couldn't swim.

I tried to save you from the flow,

But the river wouldn't let you go.

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The raging rapids won the fight,

They pulled you under out of sight.

I searched and searched with no headway,

I lost my one true love that day.


The coroner wrote on his file,

"Death by drowning. Was with child."

Accusations spread around,

Forced me from my quaint hometown.


"GUILTY!" so the papers said,

Unfounded blame upon my head.

No time to grieve or even cry,

My dreams and hopes had gone awry.

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Time has passed me by so fast

But I still live within the past,

Hoping that you'll reappear

When Autumn comes around each year.


Every Fall I go back home,

Along that lane I sadly roam.

I dream that you are by my side,

But this time you will be my bride.

Source

© 2015 John Hansen

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Comments 91 comments

Ericdierker profile image

Ericdierker 18 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

A great short story dressed in poetry. Very well done. Most assuredly a tragedy beyond compare. Three lives lost in a moment of time.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you for being quick off the mark and the first to read this Eric. I truly appreciate your taking the time and your generous comment.


billybuc profile image

billybuc 18 months ago from Olympia, WA

Sadly beautiful, John. I love your creativity...hell, I just love creativity. Great story. You had me clinging to each line and hoping for the best while fearing the worst.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thanks for the kind words Bill. I'm glad you enjoyed this, unfortunately not all stories have happy endings.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thanks for the kind words Bill. I'm glad you enjoyed this, unfortunately not all stories have happy endings.


Harishprasad profile image

Harishprasad 18 months ago from India

First, I saw the beautiful photos of autumn, wonderful colors cheered my heart. I marveled at this great artistry of nature. When I read the poem, I felt as if everything was happening before my eyes. You portrayed it so vivid and alive. The sadness overwhelmed me but I enjoyed this poem. A very effective poem and a great response to Carb Diva's challenge. Well done, John.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you for reading this hub Harish. I am sorry after the beautiful photos cheered your heart that the poem was a sad one. But there are not always happy endings in life as I said to Bill. Thank you for your kind words regardless.


Chriswillman90 profile image

Chriswillman90 18 months ago from Parlin, New Jersey

The imagery is fantastic and you'd never know it was shrouded by sadness. Yet this is how I view autumn in my head. It looks beautiful but there's something cold and dark about it as well. Very well written.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Exactly Chris, you got it! That's what I was trying to portray, glad I succeeded. Thanks for your great comment. Have a good day.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 18 months ago from Central Florida

Oh, John this is so sad yet beautiful. I feel his heart breaking and the horror he felt when he couldn't save his true love. Then to find out he lost his unborn child as well as his love to the sweeping river is heart wrenching. On top of it all, he's accused of murder.

You told the tale well. I love your response to the challenge. Excellent!


Larry Rankin profile image

Larry Rankin 18 months ago from Oklahoma

Compelling imagery.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Hi Shauna, I love to try to write an entire story within a poem. It isn't always easy but very satisfying when it does. I was pleased with the way this one came together. Sad but beautiful is what I wanted. Thank you for your lovely comment.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Larry, I am glad the imagery all worked out well and was effective. Have a great day.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 18 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

This is sadly beautiful. A tragedy in ryhme.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thanks for reading Mike, there are those two words again (sad and beautiful)? Glad you enjoyed.


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 18 months ago from High desert of Nevada.

Sad yet beautiful. I love reading your poetry, Jodah. This is very well done, flows nicely and stirs emotions.


CatherineGiordano profile image

CatherineGiordano 18 months ago from Orlando Florida

It's a poem, but also a short story, Very nicely done. One thing I miss because I am living in Florida, the fall colors.


annart profile image

annart 18 months ago from SW England

Beautifully sad story, excellently told.

Ann


manatita44 profile image

manatita44 18 months ago from london

Incredibly beautiful, Bro. Another great rhyming poem that flows well, like a river. Romantic too and yes, a fine ending. Well done


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you For always reading my poetry Phyllis. Glad you enjoyed this one too. Have a great day.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thanks for reading Catherine, yes I like to try to fit an entire story into a poem occassionally. We don't have vibrant autumn colours like these where I live either unfortunately.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Ann. I contemplating writing this as a story but decided it may be more effective as a poem.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thanks for reading another of my works Manatita. Your generous critique is appreciated.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 18 months ago from The Caribbean

Jodah, your response is unique, touching and exceptionally beautiful. There's none like Jodah!


Carb Diva profile image

Carb Diva 18 months ago

Jodah, all of the responses I have read to my challenge have been wonderful, imaginative, inspiring. But this one, though short, was the one that moved me to tears.

I am so glad that you did not respond to this challenge until the time was right. You found the perfect words. You have touched me, and all I can say is "thank you" from the bottom of my heart.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 18 months ago from southern USA

John, your response to the challenge is always unique as you, and refreshing being it is unexpected! You may have just written a flash fiction/poem story ...cool. It is both beautiful and heartrending (I know that is what Sha meant ...that one seems to trip many up). You're the best.

Up +++ tweeting, pinning, G+ and sharing

God bless


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Aw thanks MsDora. I pride myself in being a little different. Glad you enjoyed this.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you for your wonderful comment Carb Diva. It is a great compliment if the person that issued the challenge enjoys one's response. I love these challenges and I am not one to give up on them easily. So glad I persisted with this one too and that it touched you and moved you to tears (in a good way I hope).


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Hi Theresa(Faith), where would I be without your constant support and encouragement? I can take compliments all day :) Seriously, I am so glad you enjoyed this poem/flash fiction story and I appreciate the vote up, pin, share, tweet etc. God bless back.


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 18 months ago from New York

Oh John! This one was certainly a twist of fate. How beautifully you weaved the tale of these two lovers, lost through one slip of fate. How quick people are to judge. You've really crammed this beautiful poem full with a beautifully sad story.

You are a master story teller!

Voted up, awesome, beautiful, and interesting. Shared too.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

You said it all Mary. I am so glad you liked the way I wove a story into my poem. I guess it' a sort of hybrid poem/short fiction. I like to tell a story but I prefer to write poetry so this is the result. Thank you for reading, voting up and sharing.


drbj profile image

drbj 18 months ago from south Florida

Jodah - You surpassed yourself with this beautiful poetic paean to your lost love accompanied by enchanting photos. Now put a C. for creativity in the middle of your name.


cat on a soapbox profile image

cat on a soapbox 18 months ago from Los Angeles

Hello John,

I am smoothing the goose bumps I get when I am deeply moved! I agree with my fellow commenters that this is a beautifully poetic, yet sorrowful, story- a masterful take on this challenge:)


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Drbj, thanks for reading. I really enjoyed this challenge and was quite happy with what I came up with. Glad you enjoyed it too.

John C Hansen


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Hi Cat, sorry about the goosebumps, but that is actually a real compliment. When I watch a show like The Voice I know a singer is very special if a song or performance gives me goosebumps. Glad I didn't give up on this challenge. Thank you for your kind comment.


The Examiner-1 profile image

The Examiner-1 18 months ago

That was beautiful John, you really went all out with it. It has heart and meaning, truth and lies, yet it is all wrapped into a nice short verse. You have done a wonderful job. I voted it up, shared and pinned it.

Kevin


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 18 months ago from USA

John, I much enjoyed this dark, somber love tale. Do more of these types of dark story poems! Wonderful!


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Kevin. I am glad you so all those things within this piece and found it beautiful. I appreciate the vote up, share and pin too. Cheers.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Hi Flourish. Thanks for reading and for your kind comment. I have done a couple of thee "dark story poems" and this one in particular seems to have been very popular so I will try to keep them coming (probably interspersed with a few lighter more uplifting pieces). Take care.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 18 months ago from Shelton

Jodah when it comes to challenges you just never disappoint.. love how you did this.. voted creative and amazing :) up and awesome Frank


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

I guess challenges bring out the best of me Frank. I never want to disappoint the person who set them. Thanks for the great comment and voted up.


ChitrangadaSharan profile image

ChitrangadaSharan 18 months ago from New Delhi, India

Beautiful but sad!

I admire your creativity and imagination. A great response to the challenge indeed.

Thanks and voted up!


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Chitrangada. I always appreciate your comments. Glad you enjoyed this poem. I always enjoy these challenges.


AudreyHowitt profile image

AudreyHowitt 18 months ago from California

I love narrative poetry. Really nicely done John!


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Audrey, glad you enjoyed this one. Take care.


Nadine May profile image

Nadine May 18 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

Apart from your great poem, the photos added thousand words to your post. We are also moving in Autumn and I have taken many pictures. Now I can't wait to be creative with them for my on line products.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Nadine. I agree that attractive photos do really add to a hub, especially with poetry and Autumn leads itself to wonderful colours.


Kamalesh050 profile image

Kamalesh050 18 months ago from Sahaganj, Dist. Hooghly, West Bengal, India

Sad but Wonderful! The photos are Brilliant. Voted Up & Awesome. Have a good day! Best Wishes, Kamalesh


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

I very much appreciate your kind comment Kamalesh. Thanks for the vote up. Have a great week.


word55 profile image

word55 18 months ago from Chicago

Hey Jodah, Lovely poem! I loved the rhythm and rhyme with beautiful pictures. Nice Richard Marx track/video. Wonderful mood.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Hi word55, I appreciate your kind comment. I have always liked that Richard Marx track and thought it fit well with the theme here. Have a great week.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 18 months ago from Southern Illinois

Oh my, this one grabbed me and wouldn't let go. I hope it's not true. So very beautiful! Your rhyming is unsurpassed. Loved it..


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Ruby. Good to see you back. The story isn't intentionally based on a true event, but it quite possibly could be. Glad it grabbed you. Thanks for the kind words about my rhyme too.


lollyj lm profile image

lollyj lm 18 months ago from Washington KS

Loved the photos and the poem. Beautiful.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you lollyj. I appreciate you taking the time to read and comment. Have a great day/night.


Dana Tate profile image

Dana Tate 18 months ago from LOS ANGELES

A beautiful love story with a tragic ending. Jodah, your ability to weave stories by just looking at a picture continues to amaze me. I love your creativity. Gorgeous pic's by the way. Voted up and awesome!


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you for that lovely comment Dana. I appreciate you.


lawrence01 profile image

lawrence01 18 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

Awesome. Thats the only word I can think of.

Lawrence


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Lawrence, that word will do just fine :)


kurtreifschneider profile image

kurtreifschneider 18 months ago from Loveland Colorado

What an awesome poem from an awesome poet........I followed it like watching a movie....


Genna East profile image

Genna East 18 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

Hi John. What a story! The photos only add to the sad beauty of the tragedy, so creatively expressed in rhyme and rhythm…like the seasons that pass and return to mark nature’s cadence in life. Voted up and shared.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Kurt, compliments by one's peers especially fine poets as yourself means a lot. Glad you enjoyed my story in a poem. Take care.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Good to see you Genna. Thank you for your generous comment. I am pleased that you enjoyed this sad tale and the rhyme and rhythm of the poem. Autumn lends itself to beautiful photos.


aviannovice profile image

aviannovice 18 months ago from Stillwater, OK

Wow, that was incredibly well done. From beauty to tragedy in one fell swoop.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Deb, glad you enjoyed this poem/story.


bethperry profile image

bethperry 18 months ago from Tennesee

Jodah, this is so touching and beautiful. And it brought tears to my eyes like only the best of poetry can. Great job; voted up!


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Beth. It's comments like that which mean the most. If I can touch a reader's emotions I have succeeded.


Malcolm Massiah profile image

Malcolm Massiah 18 months ago from Bristol, England

Nice flow and rhythm and a nicely told tale - intriguing and dramatic with little melodrama.

The rhythm in places reminds me of 'A Creed' by Christmas Humphries.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 18 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Malcolm, I don't know 'A Creed' by Christmas Humphries. I will have to check it out.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 17 months ago from The Beautiful South

Missed this challenge and this wonderful poem. There are just never words of appreciation good enough it seems to show how very much I love your poetry. It is not just the words and story that are always so touching but the flow and rhythm that make it a work of art!

^+ as always


Jodah profile image

Jodah 17 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Jackie, I am quite humbled by your kind and touching comment, and it makes me happy that you love my poetry in particular. It is responses like your that keeps the desire burning to write poetry here at Hub Page. I am glad you found this hub and the chalenge. Are you still having trouble with your notifications? Thank you for the vote up. Blessings.


Eric Flynn profile image

Eric Flynn 17 months ago from Providence, Rhode Island

Hi Jodah, this started like a warm cup of apple cider and turned to hot vinegar, good lord what a tragic tonal shift 0-60, sweet to sour, life to death . I guess this was a zig zag poem (misdirection ha). Everyone's comments are interesting on this one; but overal "melodrama" is the word that keeps appearing. Great melodrama roller coaster.

EWF


Jodah profile image

Jodah 17 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Actually Eric when I started this I had no idea for the direction it would take other than I wanted something unexpected to be around the bend in the path. Thanks for the great comment..."a melodramatic roller coaster"..I like it.


Missy Smith profile image

Missy Smith 17 months ago from Florida

This was just beautiful Jodah. Autumn is my favorite season, so this poem caught my eye. Like you, I like to post music videos too. I think the reader will get even more inspiration from the words if music tells a similar tale. This one, again, was really beautiful! Hazard is the perfect song to put beside it. :)


Jodah profile image

Jodah 17 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Missy, thank you for that lovely comment. I love Autumn too and I also agree with you about the music video adding to the inspiration and message if it is relevant to your words. Thank you for taking the time to read this poem.


Moms-Secret profile image

Moms-Secret 17 months ago from Central Florida

I enjoyed this.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 17 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you for reading this Moms-Secret. Glad you enjoyed it.


shprd74 profile image

shprd74 14 months ago from Bangalore

very heart felt writing. Indeed gossip can break things apart.

- Hari


Jodah profile image

Jodah 14 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you for reading this poem Hari and for your kind comment. Take care.


petunia4me 14 months ago

beautifully written, poetic story; but the end is too sad,;too sad for me to bear


Jodah profile image

Jodah 14 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Aw Petunia, thank you for the kind comment, but sorry the ending made you sad.


word55 profile image

word55 14 months ago from Chicago

Hey, that looks like one of the roads to Kingdom come. Anyway, John if she meant that much to you, you should have jumped in to save her. Couldn't you swim? Just joking. Sorry, it just feels good to be back reading my friends again. I miss you guys. This is my 2nd comment here, you know.


Jodah profile image

Jodah 14 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Hi A, good to see you back. I guess your new Real Estate business is keeping you busy. Yes when I saw you had commented here I thought, hey this is a second visit. The more the merrier. I can swim a little, but not really well enough to save anyone if they are too far in.. :) You are right, one of these roads lead to Kingdom Come.


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 14 months ago

Jodah, this was a timely post for me. Autumn is my favorite time of year and this sad but promising poem is appropriate for the outlook. Beautiful and romantic!


Jodah profile image

Jodah 14 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Hello Dianna, I suppose it is Autumn now in your lovely part of the world. Spring and Autumn are my favourite seasons. So glad you enjoyed this poem.


Surabhi Kaura profile image

Surabhi Kaura 14 months ago from Toronto, Canada

Ravishing! Touched my heart, Jodah :)


Jodah profile image

Jodah 14 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Thank you Surabhi, that short comment says it all. If your writing touches someone's heart what more do you need as a writer?


Rozina Iftikhar profile image

Rozina Iftikhar 14 months ago from Islamabad

A few days back, a teenager was looking for a poem on Autumn, for her school presentation...after browsing through all the available sources, she turned to Hub Pages...and guess what...she rejected her mom's poem and selected this one...!

...this teenager happens to be my daughter...!

Yes Jodah..your poetry is extraordinary. ...


Jodah profile image

Jodah 14 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Wow! Rosina, that is the highest compliment I could receive about one of my poems. It is my goal to try to write poetry to appeal to the younger generation and even people who think they don't like poetry. I am sorry your daughter rejected your poem..but honoured that she chose this one.

Thank you for such a generous comment.


swalia profile image

swalia 11 months ago

Such a tragic story but so beautifully written!


Jodah profile image

Jodah 11 months ago from Queensland Australia Author

Unfortunately Swalia, not all stories have happy endings. Thank you for your kind comment though. Take care.

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