A is red E is black I is white
D is green U is blue those are the
colors of the letters

A and E are like the black dark night
when the sun is setting like a witch flying
on her broom with her cheeks hot like red
lava coming out of a volcano as black
rocks and ash come out

I is like at midnight you see white
ghosts around with your cheeks so pale
It comes out of the white paper in your book
that takes you to an adventure with

D is like the beach when there is seaweed
getting washed away. In the sea
you can see the reflections of the grassy
mountains that I might climb in
the future

U is like the river flowing in a
peaceful day the sky so blue as
the flowers by the river and the
ocean far away

A, E, I, D and U are like the world
of all colors compared together as the
red sun setting in the black night with
white ghosts and the green seaweed at the ocean
that is blue as the flowers by the

—Julia Mayhew (from Eagle’s Wing)

(Happy Thanksgiving to Julia and anyone else who celebrates today!)

Addendum (Feb. 2020). I was looking for that poem in the archived version of the site, and in the process of finding it I liked this one so much I thought I’d add it here:

Thursday, May 22, 2003


That is a nice car
look at its big black
smashed up wheel, so
black. That car is so brown
covered with mud. How
beautiful it looks. I just
love how brown it is.
The car is peeling. I’m glad
it is because it looks
nicer like that. Oh that
broken car.

Oh that broken car! I hope she’s still writing poetry…


  1. Goodness, that’s excellent! I like it at least as much as I do Voyelles.
    …(is D supposed to be O there? It’s the same on Julia’s site, but I’m a little puzzled…)

  2. I too was puzzled by that. Perhaps Jonathan will weigh in with an explanation. For the moment, I’m assuming she simply felt like writing about D. At any rate, I agree: it’s a wonderful poem.

  3. The letters spell out ‘adieu’, so I wonder if Julia has that in mind.

  4. Lucky, lucky child.

  5. She asked me if she had to do only vowels and I said she could do any letters she wanted. D was green for her because of the “ee” sound, she told me.

  6. My wife and her sister are both color-number synaesthetes. I’m pretty sure that neither one has ever written a poem about it.

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