Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Leaf, Leaf, Leave (Meghan)

Leaf, Leaf, Leave

One time I saw a leaf
in ombre green to red,
severed too soon from the
still-living—still staining, still clinging
in late September to summer’s
strong branches, bracing for the fall.

One time I saw a leaf
of smooth white paper
abandoned on the concrete drive
(beneath a tree, reddening for Fall),
flying off sheet by sheet
like doves from a branch’s sacrifice
in full, arresting flight.

One time I saw you leaf
through piles of sorted mail,
envelopes recording bills
already paid.  You were searching
for love letters you might have dreamed
but wanted to be real:
a leaf from autumn pressed
between pages never read.

One time I saw you leave
but knew you would return.
I’d pressed leaves from the day
we made our promises, after all.

One time I saw you leave
but couldn’t watch you go.
You stood in the space between us
like a late September leaf
while I lay on the concrete,
a rotting arm, a paper bird,
wiser from the Fall.

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