Fall's bitten garden is stalks of liatris bent at the elbow,
chewed coleus bowing to earth

crisp leaves of primrose stenciled with maple stars
dropped from tree bones overhead

Breeze, swelled and curled and riled into unexpected wind,
unclenches talons of the climbing hydrangea's
raptor claws and redrapes the frosted vine over soil

We know it's there, air, by what it does

It sweeps and rakes morning to night,
piles hours into days into weeks

Look at air cloaked and shuffling Look at air,
a sister traveler ambling with no itinerary
talking your ear off as if you cared to listen

Published in Gettysburg Review

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