Autumnal Gourd

Autumn, season of your leaving;
Still, these cool crisp mornings
Are relieving and on this day
Unremitting, interceding,
Somewhat less deceiving
Than callow Spring
Or clammy Summer,
Winter being the other season
Of your departing, laid bare,
Apart from occasional snows
To cover distances between
Stark rationales and reasoning
Of these unclothed,
Exhausted lovers,
These seasons, back and forth,
Timeless time, remote
And lacking touch
Or fortuitousness
In any form.

Season of kindling and sparklers,
Of uprisings and people living dead –
I passed one or two in aisle number 9
At my local supermarket as I
Balanced newly arrived varieties
In my basket, of pears
And apples and parsnips;
Butternut, and quince for squash,
And broccoli for a soup;
I search for gourds from abroad
Where vegetables grow
More fleshily, abundantly as
Only a more tolerant
Populous deserves.
On my walk home,
Drenched to the bone
Because I rarely check weather forecasts
For I do not see the point and also
Drenched because I have
An ongoing dispute with umbrellas
(Which is likely to run forever),
I realised that I am
Routinely grieving for
A one-off surface-zero event
Eternalised in pumpkin-coloured ice
And the life of a gingerbread house –
Eat a piece and the walls fall down,
Its roof collapses as though
Stationed just beneath
A recurring, inevitable landslide;
Yellowing leaves drift down
Dumbfoundedly, yet I am
Constantly striving
In battles baked underneath
A sharp Yukon permafrost;
And so each season loses
Or, like feathers, moults
Something of their meaning;
Time becomes,
Instead of a
Celebration as inherently
She should be,
During these feelings
And through exposures
Undergo retrogressions,
Becomes a chore,
A dull surprise,
Like receiving a letter
By post in a brown
Envelope, plastic window,
Probably a bill,
Edges slightly damp,
Or akin, perhaps, to
A toothache.

Nevertheless,
Even a mild tooth complaint
Tells me I survived.

Yet I cannot help but think that
It was not so much that I chose life,
No, but rather life chose me,
And when you left
And I was bereft,
What else was there to see?

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