The Tenth Month

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Tenth Month 

From off in the distance I see it.  
Coming through the forest like light from a lantern carried aloft in the hand of the wind,
 it scatters strange shadows that drift past the trees
 like the long black dresses of lonesome spirits. 
 New fruit appears on the trees now. 
 My hands smell like oranges till long past noon. 

 The Great Horned owls have begun to gather.  
Far up in the tops of maple trees only just beginning to think
 of changing their garments to the fall shades of fire,
 they land in the moonlight, 
silhouettes of legend, of wisdom, of dreams.

A grey wind hinting of woodsmoke sweeps in from the west,
 painting sooty faces on the pansies
 and conducting the poplar leaves in recondite choruses
 that rustle and quaver as I make my way past. 
 I look over my shoulder more often now.
The big white dog stays out longer each night,
 wandering under the tall trees in communication with those whose languages remain unknowable to me. 
 He returns to his bed with a cold nose,
 his long white fur redolent of chrysanthemum blooms and pine.

Under a yellow moon hanging low enough to graze the roofline, 
in silver webs as intricate as lace, magnificent and horrible, the spiders sit waiting,
 their calligraphy legs still as the stare of a child.  

The gathering shadows out under the trees only serve 
to make the cottage glow brighter than it chose to do in the earlier months of the year. 
 Apple pies cool their bellies on cold kitchen counters.  
Another blanket is pulled from the wardrobe. 
 Stories are read until late in the night 
while the strains of Vivaldi are heard through the day.

Clad in its raiment of orange velvet and green,
 the tenth month has knocked on my door.
 I revel in the many mysteries of another glorious October.