She gathers leaves beneath
Novemberīs moon, their texture
reminiscent of linen paper and
pressed rose petals. Her auburn
hair twists and turns in the
Autumn wind like a red flame.
Her hands sense the annoyance,
attempt to tame the wild tresses.
A temporary fix until the next
gust has its way, trampling
through maple leaves and fragile
branches. Disrupting life in its
Shadows play on white fences;
she tells them to go away.
They whisper among themselves,
trees bend backwards to hear the
conversation. Shake the secrets
from their limbs where they fall
to the earth in a tempest of gold,
copper, and amber leaves.
And the cycle begins again. Raking
and gathering the dead into funeral
pyres. Lighting prayers. Then
watching them burn away her sorrow
in smoky clouds of redemption.