Tag Archives: fall

Poems for Autumn

Most decidedly, this is a most un-autumn like season. Eighty-five degrees today, what an insult. So, to make myself feel better, I have two autumn poems.

A Twisting Almanac

Like a charcoal colored sea
The night rippled with cold
And I felt on its muscular currents
An unseen armada
Harbingers of the harvest
Of fields bowed to the scythe’s curve
Of twilight’s claws drawn across noontime’s skin
And the equinox arched like a cat across the sky

The wind worried the trees
And from its feral grip
Fell a crisp rain of jagged leaves
That coiled in the wind
And then rose in a helix
Tracing their autumnal DNA,
The cycle of kaleidoscope seasons,
To the distant spark that kindled their beginnings

Fruitful Debris

A broken mosaic
Confused as a shattered puzzle
A pink and cherry bower
That crumbled and nibbled at my feet
Crisp and familiar
Like a cat
My shoes stirred
Beneath the brittle fabric
They pushed at the jagged facets
Of the harvest colored prism
The withered reminders
Of nature’s insistence
That her beauty survives
Even when death
And the photosynthetic drought
Wreaths the ground
With its bloodless garlands

Image result for falling leaves fashion illustrations - vogue - 1920's

 

Scattered Vows

For the past two days I had been sick, the victim of blocked sinuses – the spaces felt like they had been reduced to the circumference of a neutron.  I should probably had stayed home from work for one day more, but the thought of spending another day mentally tracing each breath as it meandered its slow and tortuous way through my nasal cavities was more than I could endure.

I was driven to work today.  And as I got out of the car, something made me stand still, gasping with surprise.  It wasn’t my sinuses rebelling at the shock of fresh air.  It wasn’t my renewed astonishment at the bright yellow paint of my office building.

It was the wind.

Not a fey Spring wind, green and delicate.  Not a Summer wind, sweaty and bronzed, like the bodies on the beach.  It was an Autumn wind, swimming down from cold and distant currents.  It held the promise of Winter’s chilly bite but remained playful, like a kitten sheathing its claws before it pretends to attack.

As I continued to stand, the leaves began to fall – the powder that revealed the print of the sudden wind.  They gave their scent to the wind – dark and earthy; cold to the touch.  They seemed to spin around me; chasing and teasing.  I felt a twinge of guilt at glorying in their death, in their skin the color of sepia…but it was all Nature’s symbol of Fall, of the eternal harvest, and there was beauty there, too.

I stood transfixed, reluctant to move away from this sudden circular advent that danced around me.  The wind whispered of the future:  of early darkness, of amber sunsets that burned low and small beneath a heavy twilight, of air as crisp as autumn fruit.

I took in all its scattered vows, holding them close.  Then, carrying my invisible bouquet, I went to work.

missautumn

Lunacy

It is at this time of year, the final third, with the three-syllabeled months and early shadows that predict the quickening of its domain, that I feel its presence.  Like the tides that feel the pricking of silver hooks in their watery skins, I am pushed and pulled and reminded that now is the time.

During the warm months, it is a jealous, white shadow, hanging in the humid, seductive sky.  Its cold women, crescents dangling from their ears, stars melting into their hands, are content to wait.

Until now.  And the hooks in my skin tell me also that the wait is over.  The moon – call it hunter's, harvest, blood, corn, barley – has returned, its chilled ascendancy sharp and frosted in the evening sky.  It shines with a metallic light, a cloth of silver that charms the heavens so much that the nights become longer, so that the lively fabric could be enjoyed that much more.

When the equinox rides high in the sky, climbing the burnished galaxies, the harvests below emerge from the mothering earth and her erupted, buried seeds.  I can smell the flavors and colors in the hard, cold air.  I shiver with the wet, vermillion leaves, the early shadows and the piercing breezes, heavy with rain and living things.

I see an orange moon brushing darkened fields, a white moon chilling the constellations, a yellow moon that warms autumn's firmament.  Autumn carries in her arms the produce of busy populations, leaves that crackle like fire, grains that are woven into loaves of bread.  She wears bracelets and ropes of pearls, but only a single pearl rests on her brow – a symbol of her most perfect jewel.

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Fire Season

There is a time of year when growing things become weary of their summer fabrics.  They flinch in the winds returning from a cooling migration through distant climates.  They shed their pastels and charts of primary colors – shrugging them to the ground like discarded cloaks.  They then shrivel and pale in the thick, golden sun and shiver in the white stare of the harvest moon.

Trees have spent the year bored with their chlorophyll sameness.  Some are condemned to keep the same color throughout the year – their leaves either pins and needs, or viscous green pools:  depthless and still.  When the third season arrives, their limbs tremble with anger, thinking of their more flamboyant, fortunate cousins.

These are the ones that feel the crackle of color seeping into their veins.  And although they fear fire, they flaunt that anxiety, mimicking the flames.  They hold the hot, electric leaves like feverish bouquets in the crevices of their arms.  They know their enemy well, and are able to reproduce its terrifying heat; their leaves fall to the ground like dying sparks.

And when they have abdicated their crowns of gold and bronze; when the last scarlet ember has fallen away, their branches will be fearsome: silhouettes of broken fingers.  Their lost color will swirl about their roots like lava, like an incandescent palatte:  licking the ground like a pack of hounds.

This is the fire season, when the trees make their danger beautiful; when they welcome nature's hot embrace, and when the flames will drip from their bodies like sweat.

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