it follows, but perhaps it leads— a season beneath a season,
the after-summer and before fall tumbles into darkness.
Now shadows dance in spotlights, and green branches are tipped with gold,
gardens are filled with flowers that know the secrets of bees–
wisely they shake heads dyed indigo, gold, and scarlet—it is a bird Eden, a squirrel pantry–
and if the river asks, you breath in its blue mystery,
taste its layers, as it unfolds time like a peony, seed to dust again and again.
My poem from the Oracle, who knows everything. She knows how beautiful September is right now in my part of the world. She also must know that yesterday I heard from my cousins that their mother, my aunt (my mother’s sister-in-law) had died the night before. It made me think about how my mom had died in April when the sky was also bright blue, and the spring flowers were blooming. So, this is not exactly a tribute to my aunt—but in her memory, a reflection of sorts on life and death and beauty.
On the day of the nor’easter, I finish reviewing the page proofs of my book. The sun comes out. I ponder new projects, while watching birds perch and peck at the feeder hanging at our kitchen window—finches with their red feather patches demonstrate the feeder’s pecking order. A tufted titmouse, nuthatches, and even a woodpecker fly in for a snack. Robins congregate in the street, discussing the weather and current events before flying up to a tree to chatter at the squirrels. The days grow longer, and despite the wind and snow, the daffodils are rising from the ground. They are not deterred by icy gusts. Momentary setbacks. They know spring is coming. So do I. I simply have to get through the next snowstorm—it’s coming, too.
March’s lion roars,
frost-breath lays a filigree—
budding branches bide
We’re supposed to get another nor’easter tonight into tomorrow with several inches of snow expected.