Meet poet and writer Colin Morton, read excerpts from his books and other publications, get news of his forthcoming events, and get a glimpse of the world from his point of view.
Below is the poem that was runner up for the John Newlove Award for poetry in 2017, along with an image of the painting that is its subject. The painting hung in my home when I was a child. If you happen to recognize who painted it, please let me know.
Up in Muskoka
A pupil of the Group of Seven
painted this lakeside landscape
on Bristol board the size of a letter pad.
Early autumn, green leaves fading to orange
on the scrawny poplar, lake water still and pale
as if already half frozen.
Fine brush strokes outline grass and twigs
but darkened daubs on trunks suggest
the bark has been stripped
by harsh weather or children
wandering far from homes
the artist painted out.
A narrow brownish strip at the bottom
must be the road that brought her here
and before the light changes and more leaves fall
will speed her away again
to the house where on wintry afternoons
a boy who would become my father
came to see her work.
He knew this place,
this lakeside where the poplar leaned,
and the painter must have seen in his eyes,
what art can do, what he hoped –
not to own or even make a landscape
but to keep it with him anywhere,
to hold a day that never turns dark.
The leaves about to fall might be distant birds.