On Wednesday we learned of a transition in our family, a little one we were expecting in February was instead delivered at twenty weeks by my sister Autumn. I’ve been completely humbled by the experience, both the exquisite unbelievable pain, and the sweet tender weight of family. I’m feeling everything in poetry. I wanted to share some with you.
The Beauty of Autumn
Few of the trees here are evergreen
The most beautiful hues are all bright and brief
and clear and sharp and haunting
The verdant holdout who seems immune
to the tax fall demands with windswept hands
will be stripped right down to the quick, it’s that season
Fire covers the wood from floor to ceiling
becomes earth again, still, changing and healing
Swallowing up all but the smallest bones
Hours after the child became ash
An owl told the story in a whoop and howl
We thrilled at the wild language of our belonging
And I wonder, how do the trees let go
of their leaves, which made it through the summer’s blaze
But then left, hushed and nameless with the wind?
And I wonder, what does the earth recall
When the cold gives way and the green slips forth
from her body, taking another greedy spring?
And I wonder of Venus and Mercury
When they watch her face is it grief they see
Do they wish their fleeting eclipses could keep her from burning?
And I wonder, what should a mother do
With that stored up love, when a life is through…
what playful perfect spirit will come to receive it?
When I was younger I feared the woods
How could all this ghosting amount to any good?
Now it seems so sweet just to be haunted.
Was it yesterday we rang all the bells
To mark the solstice and the darkening days
To chant: even this quick dying season was wanted.