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Autumn Poem for 2013

There are still quiet places, mostly dark
cool places, such as the blue light
that floods hillsides before dawn—
there is no reason in particular
this should remind me of the last
days of summer with whipping, hawkish air
that tears (or) old scarves, burnishes
leaves (or) cheeks with the scent of rain
falling on chrysanthemums, cavernous husks
of yellow light (slender stalks
of pure grain) flooding hillsides at dusk,

And in the stone corner of my basement, where
on a damp patch of carpet a cricket sings
a lament over the shut eyes of her lover
and I can see the tiny violins that are
her brittle legs, which rend her black shawl—
this music is a quiet place, in the dwelling
of dead insects whose skeletons understand
what it means to fall, there is no reason
in particular that stones, flooding
the hillsides after life should be quiet,
nor gourds be ghoulish only in October,

Yet there are still quiet places—
one of them is autumn.