I squeeze the last chocolate raisin
From its box and suck the chocolate,
Crunch the raisin,
Savor their lingering taste.

The hot autumn sun rests
On a fallen tree trunk,
Whitening its petrified nerve endings.
The lake laps at it consolingly,
A devoted dog tongue
Wet, slobbering, eager.

Unseen fish ply the deep water,
Ice an ancestral memory.
Today, only red leaves stripped
From undulating bushes
Ripple the surface, then sink down.

Cries of hidden birds,
Laughter of children in canoes
A whir of blue bottles playing tag
And the clunk of a stone I heave
To cast away a heavy burden.

Fall’s brilliance has the flare
Of a last rally, goes out
In a blaze of glorious color,
A final fireworks with all rockets launched,
A salvo of shooting leaf stars.