Poetry We Admire: Renewal


For October’s Poetry We Admire, we’ve gathered up six recently published poems from around the net all touching on the theme of Renewal. 

Recently, we celebrated Rosh Hashanah, and now we’ve walked into the new year with this new season. The fall Equinox has come and the days are getting shorter. The fields are being harvested and prepared for their fallow rest in the dark and cold of winter. 

It is during this time of year that we have the opportunity to reflect, rest, and recharge. We prepare, we store our energy and reserves. We honor the cycle of life, death, and rebirth. With the change of season, there is renewal. 

This month we shine new light on some rich treasures from Jenn Givhan in The Nation, David Roderick in Los Angeles Review, John A.  Nieves in Tinderbox Poetry, Caitlin Grace McDonnell in Autumn Sky Poetry, Gaia Rajan in Dreams Walking, and Jai Hamid Bashir in The Cortland Review.




My daughter
is a graveyard by which I mean ripe

for rebirthing. She pulls me from the beds
I’ve buried & tells me
if she is wise it’s because I’ve taught her

by which she means
I’ve held myself deep within
myself all along.


 from “The Excavation”

by Jenn Givhan in The Nation




Children have led me to burrs,
mushrooms, maggots, prickers, and scat.
Once to a hummingbird nest.
Once to a Jerusalem cricket clapped in a cup.
Awe, so much awe
I’d argue that every day is a weed
in a jar on our counter,
that this acorn in Olivia’s hand
contains twenty million future oaks, potentially.

from “Call It a Day”

by David Roderick in Los Angeles Review




At dusk,

the strays would gather where the grass

ended to eat the day’s trash. We would sit on

the middle branches of the birches across the way

and imbibe the rhythms of the scene. How often

lips were licked, paws cleaned. 


from “Scavenger Tercets”

by John A. Nieves in Tinderbox Poetry



Turning toward
the second half of a century
as the world turns half dark,
and we have not yet lost,
and we’re no longer young,
as our lungs learn to empty
and fill up again, we will look up
away from the small dark mirror
to the cold blue autumn sky.

from “Equal Night”

by Caitlin Grace McDonnell

in Autumn Sky Poetry




Our whispers, our myth like the best part

of church. In the pit of it, we grew

flames. Raised pigeons in our silhouette, replaced

our shadows with wings. Our lives beginning over 

and over and over—


from “Time Travel Taught Me Nothing”

by Gaia Rajan in Dreams Walking




our species is capable of salvation. Awakening in pools
of pearled sweat, running barefoot, dazed as a caught housefly, to hives:
sheets icy gold to noticed prayer— bees returned.

from “The Palmist”

by Jai Hamid Bashir in The Cortland Review


Kim Harvey