closing ceremonies

four ragged-winged red tail hawks
swoop and circle overhead,
their melancholy cries piercing
the thickening evening air
as the neighbors pull the newest set
of fallen branches from the sidewalk.
the apples on the trees in the empty lot
have begun to fill out, and a slow blush
is creeping onto their green cheeks.
the vines tumbling over the park wall
are star-white with blossoms bearing
a fragrance too heavy for such slender arms.
in the garden, the six-foot sunflowers
feel the world’s descent toward autumn,
turning their faces from the gathering dusk
to watch for the first rays of sunrise.