October 16, 2009

Dorothy Mahoney

IN YOUR ABSENCE

my yearning ripened
like the last apple
russet and out of reach
but for the sun
touching it briefly

the ash lost its leaves first
and in your absence
autumn touched my heart
and I feared a winter without you
so many leaves underfoot
that the grass yellowed

two squirrels chased each other
in a rough scramble
up and down
the broad poplar
and two starlings dipped
into the dark water of the birdbath
twice I found bones at the bottom
brought by crows
I shivered in the chill
of that October morning

from Rattle #22, Winter 2004
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