Nature poetry

Turn to the outdoors for poetic inspiration. Sit and observe nature for a few minutes. Notice what you hear, smell and feel. Take your impressions, focus on specific descriptions, and compose a short poem. 

Tips:

  • Read other poems to get an idea for the styles you like.
  • Use comparisons (simile and metaphor).
  • Read it out loud to yourself so you can hear how it sounds.
  • Listen to tips from Kwame Alexander, NPR’s poet-in-residence

Submit your entry by Wednesday, September 30, 2020 to info@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org. Include your name, age, poem (20 lines or less) and the location that inspired it – attach a photo if you want! ORK will award a t-shirt to the top three poets.


Examples

Blackwater Sounds
By: Mel Sparrow

Do you hear the grass?
It makes me laugh
As it blows in the wind
And reminds me of an old friend
The wasps hum
While dragonflies vibrate like a drum
The Kingfisher sings
While the fish scream
Listen to the sounds
As the blackwater’s heart pounds, how it pounds.

Birches (excerpt)
By: Robert Frost
When I see birches bend to left and right
Across the lines of straighter darker trees,
I like to think some boy’s been swinging them.
But swinging doesn’t bend them down to stay
As ice-storms do. Often you must have seen them
Loaded with ice a sunny winter morning
After a rain. They click upon themselves
As the breeze rises, and turn many-colored
As the stir cracks and crazes their enamel.
Soon the sun’s warmth makes them shed crystal shells
Shattering and avalanching on the snow-crust—
Such heaps of broken glass to sweep away
You’d think the inner dome of heaven had fallen.

Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey, On Revisiting the Banks of the Wye during a Tour. July 13, 1798 (excerpt)

By: William Wordsworth
Five years have past; five summers, with the length
Of five long winters! and again I hear
These waters, rolling from their mountain-springs
With a soft inland murmur.—Once again
Do I behold these steep and lofty cliffs,
That on a wild secluded scene impress
Thoughts of more deep seclusion; and connect
The landscape with the quiet of the sky.
The day is come when I again repose
Here, under this dark sycamore, and view
These plots of cottage-ground, these orchard-tufts,
Which at this season, with their unripe fruits,
Are clad in one green hue, and lose themselves
‘Mid groves and copses.

Scavenger Hunt

 

Ogeechee Riverkeeper encourages you to get out and explore the Ogeechee and Canoochee watershed. The challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to photograph the items on this list.

All are welcome to play for fun, but there are prizes for those that wish to compete.

Players get 1 point for each item found. An additional point is earned if the player correctly identifies the specific item. Example: A feather (1 pt). Identifies as barred owl (1 additional pt). Points are cumulative. There are no deductions for items not found or misidentified; they are simply points not earned.

Submit photo(s) to info@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org. In your email, include your checklist and any identifiers for extra points along with your total of your points.

The three players with the most points will win an exclusive ORK drybag or t-shirt.


Photograph these items (1 point each). Identify these items (1 additional point each). Possible total: 20 points.

    • Wildflowers
    • Pinecone
    • Berries
    • Vine
    • Seeds or seed pod
    • Bird nest
    • Insect
    • Feather
    • Unusual shaped leaf
    • Acorn or other nuts

Photograph these items (1 point each). Identify location of these items (1 additional point each). Possible total: 28 points.

    • Ponded area in a creek
    • Animal hole in the ground
    • Spider web
    • Bird nest
    • Hole in a tree
    • Animal tracks
    • Eroded soil
    • Stream or creek
    • Dew on a flower or leaf
    • Rocks with many colors
    • Y-shaped twig
    • Sunlight coming through trees
    • Trail marker
    • Fungus on a tree

Download a PDF of the checklist.

Bonus points:

Two additional points will be awarded to player with most artistic arrangement of items in their photo submission.

Maximum possible: 50 points


Rules:

Submissions must be received by Monday, June 15, noon EST for consideration in the competition.

Submitted images may be used by ORK on social media. By submitting photos, players agree to let ORK share these images.

ORK will contact winners using submission email address.

Remember: do not disturb any animals or nests, or touch any unknown plants. Do not trespass on private property.

Have fun!