Autumn

Lots of poets speak of autumn as a time of decay, death. I don’t see it that way. I see it as a time of withdrawal to interior space, rest, quiet growth, gathering of strength. I love the colors, the sound of dried leaves rustling and falling, how they feel underfoot, the rich smell of decomposition. The fish move more slowly, stay deeper in the water, the kingfisher’s chattering flight above is less frequent.

The name – of it – is “Autumn” –
The hue – of it – is “Blood” –
An Artery – upon the Hill –
A Vein – along the Road –

Great Globules – in the Alleys –
And Oh, the Shower of Stain –
When Winds – upset the Basin –
And spill the Scarlet Rain –

It sprinkles Bonnets – far below –
It gathers ruddy Pools –
Then – eddies like a Rose – away –
Upon Vermilion Wheels –

Emily Dickinson, c. 1862

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