Monday, October 3, 2011

An Early October Cold :: from American Life in Poetry

Here we repost the weekly poetry column brought to you, free of charge, by American Life in Poetry – an organization supported by The Poetry Foundation, the Library of Congress, and the U.S. Poet Laureate from 2004-2006, Ted Koosner. This week is presented a windy-cold and haunting poem by Don Thompson:


I used to think the land
had something to say to us,
back when wildflowers
would come right up to your hand
as if they were tame.

Sooner or later, I thought,
the wind would begin to make sense
if I listened hard
and took notes religiously.
That was spring.

Now I’m not so sure:
the cloudless sky has a flat affect
and the fields plowed down after harvest
seem so expressionless,
keeping their own counsel.

This afternoon, nut tree leaves
blow across them
as if autumn had written us a long letter,
changed its mind,
and tore it into little scraps.

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