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the song of autumn

november is the march of autumn

but today the sun glowed warmly

on trees shot with gold and fire

i crunched and crackled through leaves

pretending back to childhood

savouring the scent of the air

the scent you can’t explain

except to say ‘this is autumn’

just as you have to explain the scent

of tomatoes in a summer garden

by saying ‘these are tomatoes’

and so it continued to be autumn

and i tried to pretend i was small again

but in all my traceries and caperings

leaves had crept between foot and sole

and stuck uncomfortably as i walked

i wondered whether such things

had mattered to me in the age of innocence

when i had been known to sit in wet sand

in bright pink corduroy pants

blissfully happy under a tree long since gone

i have realized and realized anew

that with adulthood comes responsibility

yet wide-eyed wonder is not to be forsaken

though born under a star of justice

i often find myself off balance

floundering with a floating anchor

i do not mean to be pessimistic

am not an embittered melancholic

but there is a sober joy about stretching

a grave elation in learning

yearning patiently for the unknown

all my autumns of delight have one source

and sometimes november is may

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