The Mosaic and Machinery of Autumn
 
I

     Persephone adjusts her veil;

the dryads flee from the pool

    as the goddess begins her descent

to the underworld, attended by shades

     flittering like a mosaic.


     Fauns and wild beasts

dance in a circle, trembling

     like the leaves that

tumble like souls around their heads,

     falling in scarlet and gold


     gashes cut by the rough wind;

and the wind still retains some tunes

     left over from summer:

it breathes melody, note-by-note,

     into the cool azure


     sky, letting

frost and unfeeling breezes

     drift

in solitude and ragged

     breaths


     to the grass and fallen leaves,

passing through the atmosphere

     as Persephone's feet clatter,

drunk on ritual seasonal sadness

     down to the obsidian throne.

II

     Autumn falls in stages;

the twilight of the year is

     slow; it is almost unnatural

in how we grow accustomed

     to it. We seldom think


     of Autumn in

terms of the mechanics, in terms

     of the fleeting

cessation of nature

     and nature's gears.


     We seldom lend

our lyrical faculties

     to pondering

the moment that persists

     for three months


     when the world

is bathed in rough, sensual

     cold

that melts the summer with

     intensity,


     leaving the world

caught in a crimson

     moment, frozen

in an all-consuming

     autumnal fire.