There is so much tragedy in the world. Though it has always been present, prevalent, stubbornly persistent, it seems alarmingly close now. Too close. For many of us in the west, the world seems to be edging closer to a deep, dark abyss—especially after the events of the past week, the month, the year. It doesn’t help that the season is turning, the darkness is lengthening and we can already sense the cold gaining strength. Will we be strong enough to withstand it?

In the icy face of grief and injustice, I must admit I am rendered speechless. I would like to explore—to fearlessly explore—this odd political and cultural landscape we find ourselves in at this precise moment. But I must devote more attention to it beyond my initial shock and confusion, which at the moment is frozen. Frozen on the senselessness of violent acts and those that enable them into perpetuity.

Since now is fading fast, I have tried to capture other feelings, other thoughts that wistfully, perhaps naively, desire to be in the foreground. Think of these pieces as tiny portals, autumn vignettes.


The evening is dark with a strong wind,

Orange leaves fly in spirals,

Fresh sprays of raindrops cling to the window and fade.


White noodles swirl in my bowl of broth,

Silk ribbons in the pungent steam,

I am grateful to be here.


In the daytime, we trudged outdoors in rubber boots,

across cobblestones studded with clear pools,

our pace glacial,

as the children cooed over especially bright leaves,

turning out too many to gather.

A few makeshift boats crossed with their curved sails.

Alone. But for a few witnesses, devoted and always curious.


I keep buying flowers in big bouquets

to fill all the rooms,

All our vases are filled, overstuffed.

Nothing lasts long.

Even dried stalks make an arrangement.

A dead tree branch I hauled in from the street

is hung with paper cutouts

of colorful leaves,

Perpetually standing

in its place,

where we strive to make a home.


Text and images by M.P. Baecker.

31 thoughts on “Sense of Fall

  1. I like the way this changes, the beginning gives the impression of an observation for the world we’re regrettably facing, but then something magnificent takes place in your words. With the imagery no less there’s an incredible beauty which forms, it’s poetic. And it sparks a feeling of serenity. To be grateful of what we have. Thank you.

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        • I love what you wrote! That Thomas Merton quote is absolutely spot on! I admire Merton’s writings so much and he has influenced so many great writers, one of them being a fundamental inspiration for this blog, Pico Iyer. What you wrote has such resonance with me, I will be commenting on it soon!

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  2. The words paint a picture with warmth but I know exactly how you feel about the state of the world. We must keep our autumn colors, and our flowers and our paper cut outs on the branches and we will survive.

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  3. As I looked at your gorgeous fall pictures and read your words I felt you are very much a kindred soul. Even in the edging darkness a pin prick of light is always to be found. Thank you for being that light today.

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    • Thanks so much! It is so great to find fellow kindred spirits here! So rewarding!

      I enjoy reading your work as well. There is a wealth of information to ponder from your last post. I will be commenting on it soon.

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      • I’ll look forward to reading what you discern from my post and what you find out. I definitely believe that there is a bullying of vulnerable populations of people, divide, conquer, beat down and distract scheme going on worldwide. We are all being set up. I say that because what is going on is a familiar blitzkrieg from how things have been done many times before.

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        • I really like how you put it about what’s going on is “how things have been done many times before.” That’s so true. It feels cyclical. We are at a point where we can identify deep problems and injustices. But I wonder how we can get passed it. How do we break the cycle? I look forward to reading more of your work!

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        • You are very right MP. I’m a person who pays attention to similarities between people, places and events past and present to help me understand the context of my world. What I am seeing is a strategy, a playbook if you will that has been used before. The reason it’s being employed again, I suspect, is the people in charge of much of the world would find it easier to destroy people, places and things than to actually try to fix any of the problems….a term has come to me from the movie the Matrix – the “Matrix reset or Matrix solution.” What happened in that movie’s universe over and over again? They destroyed everything and everyone and or made everyone forget and just started over. It’s complicated, messy and expensive to do what needs to be done to fix the problems we face as a planet. I hope I’m wrong about these people but from what I’m seeing, I’m not. I honestly don’t think they know what else to do, it’s so complicated. If you do one thing for this problem then there is the backlash from those who rather you did something else for whatever reason be it power, material wealth, position on the world stage. Every single little decision scrutinized and dissected a million ways until the solution is that much harder to find under division, conflict and downright frustration. People just give up and do easy things….lazy solutions come about with short-sighted results. I’ve had a brief taste of that being on my towns planning and zoning committee. I was barely on the board and they fed me to the wolves for a controversial decision that needed to be made. I’m not involved with any of that anymore and know it can be hell for those who are involved in government at any level. The only way I perceive we will ever break the cycle? I honestly don’t know. I think a good start, at least in America, would be term limits and that includes no more life time positions in judicial positions. We have people holding offices, running unopposed for 20-40 years in some cases. What happens after you are doing a job for a long time with no new influences….you just keep doing the same thing you’ve always done….stagnation and no innovation can arise. Anyhew….lol. I don’t have all the answers, nobody does. We just know we can’t keep on this current path.

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