Autumn, a Time to Reflect

Vincent Van Gogh, Autumn Landscape with Four Trees

Thursday

Here’s a poem to welcome in October. For Mary Oliver, autumn is a time to hunker down and reflect, a dramatic contrast with the expansive energies she associates with spring and summer.

Song for Autumn

Don’t you imagine the leaves dream now
   how comfortable it will be to touch
the earth instead of the
   nothingness of the air and the endless
freshets of wind? And don’t you think
   the trees, especially those with
mossy hollows, are beginning to look for

the birds that will come–six, a dozen–to sleep
   inside their bodies? And don’t you hear
the goldenrod whispering goodbye,
   the everlasting being crowned with the first
tuffets of snow? The pond
   stiffens and the white field over which
the fox runs so quickly brings out
   its long blue shadows. The wind wags
its many tails. And in the evening
   the piled firewood shifts a little,
longing to be on its way.
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