The First Fall
The first fall was of maple blossoms,
and forsythia blossoms, and magnolia blossoms
whose burnt pink petals bruised by the shoes
of high‑heeled brides cling to sidewalks
and color the air with perfume
and decay; and the second fall was Adam's when
he said, "Let me taste," and then, "She made me."
Next week brings the fall of tulips
whose open fingers lose their grip: scarlet,
yellow, white as pillow slips they bend like
women who flatter day by day and then
let go. Don't speak to me of falling autumn
fruit or falling snow. That's not what counts.
In the spring God's lovely sin occurs, and afterwards
occur not seasons but inseparable consequences:
sap sticky on the rising branch; and leaves,
so delicate in their green, unfolding in the light
like braids of hair undone, and cut away.
2001 - 2009
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