Harbinger – Donna Matthews

a fearsome barn owl
bewitching eyes dark yellow
hunting for her prey
autumn winds leaving trees bare
harbinger of season’s death

Painting by Donna Matthews with a Let’s Make Art Tutorial

The above poem is written in the form of tanka. The tanka form is generally a short poem with the following pattern 5-7-5-7-7. In its purest form, tanka poems are most commonly written as expressions of gratitude, love, or self-reflection and can be read forward and backward. Learn more about poetry styles here.


Donna Matthews started writing a couple of years ago when her children started leaving her nest. She enjoys writing poetry, prose, and short stories.  In addition to writing, she also loves to read, paint, take pictures, and explore the world on foot. She is passionate about helping others find their voice in both the writing and art communities.

Read more of Donna’s writing at DJ RANCH

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