Painting Fall (A Sestina)
Summer’s refugees discarded, gathered,
and cradled in the arms of fall’s wind. Nuts
released and scattered among the purged leaves.
Horizons transformed from green hues to explosions of oranges
reds, and yellows against a dry,
crisp, blue sky. Wind whistling autumn a love song through the trees.
The swaying dance of shadows cast by trees
lifts even the most solemn spirit beyond its gathered
place. Summer’s seasonal inferno departs; the earth, dry
and humbled in its wake. Squirrels searching for nuts
frantically, under muted-orange,
brilliant-yellow, and plum-red leaves.
Autumn’s musky scent leaves
the scenes spinning, almost soring the tree
tops under the sun’s orange
glow. I lie down among the gathered
spoils of summer’s foliage. Like the nuts,
I too belong to the diaspora. Dry
eyed I accept my fate as I lie on the dry,
and hard bed of decaying leaves
that crunch beneath my weight. Like them and the nuts,
I have not fallen far from my tree
but fallen I am. Youth cannot be gathered
again in the fall of life. Memories of orange
dreamsicles cannot restore the elastic tan-orange
skin that has grown pale and dry.
Goals and dreams have been gathered,
raked, like fall’s dispelled leaves,
I’m no longer near the roots of my family’s tree.
I ponder my life, while I turn the acorn nut
in my hand over and over. Striped and nut
brown it is, in my no longer tanned-orange
hand. Yet we both rest under the trees,
spectators of fall’s grand entrance. Dry
but in no way dull, we lie together on a bed of golden leaves.
Passions, dreams, and courage formed and gathered.
We share the beauty of the trees, both in our cool but dry
state of being. The nuts that we are in our own brownish-orange
ways. In the lair of leaves, daydreams of life are heaped and gathered.
© Delaina Miller 2012
Shared with dVerse Poets Week 66