Box of Empty Leaves

Every autumn, as the bright lamps
extinguish along the roadside, leaves
strewn, blowing, brilliant,
I imagine I will collect the very best
of the maples, the sycamores, the
fire of New England and put them
in a box for her

and I will save her.

In her parents’ house, she waits
within a darkened room
that she will never leave,
every delicate nerve burnt
by the razor howl of Lyme spirochetes
that turn sunlight her enemy.
I imagine her opening the wet leaves,
pushing her face into the past
and walking, again, with me

in damp forest,
the breath of decay
sweet and lingering. I imagine her
shuffling, scattering the leaves
as though walking through

How she lives again.

But every autumn, I watch, too late,
for the right moment to collect
what I can for her, until the
November wind takes the gifts
from my hands, returning
only what is brown and lost.

About David

Prone to musing and to being prone. Father to two, writer, engineer.
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