leaves

last season's leaves, the discards
of trees that hope, maybe,
for something better this year
or maybe it's just their cleanup routine
either way, it's all done now
so now there is purpose
in the precipitous wielding
of leaf blowers, impersonal power
over the rejects, the windswept,
the huddled in gutters,
the brittle crunch underfoot
underwheels, undertime,
their dry chalkboard scratching
reminds me, (I shudder), of me --
am I so far gone?
and to look at them, brown twisted refuse,
I don't think they remember the blossoms,
the spring winds, the joyful bending of breeze,
the face-to-face with a sky, with a god,
childhood either, and I sigh,
this shared worry...


 Jon Bohrn (1999) ("Vacancies")

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