“I am tired of the litany
of months, September . . . October . . .
I am tired of the way the seasons
keep changing, mimicking
the seasons of the flesh
which are real and finite.” ~ Linda Pastan, from “In a Northern Country”
Tuesday late. Very windy and stormy, 51 degrees.
We’ve had Olivia since yesterday morning, so I haven’t really had any time to sit here until now, which is, unfortunately, because I cannot sleep. And I cannot sleep because Thanksgiving is in two days, and the house is a wreck, and Thanksgiving just generally becomes one long litany of stress and pain and a terrible ache because my dad died on Thanksgiving morning, and this is the first one without my mother, and can I just please, please, stay in bed for two or three days?
The leaves are falling, falling as if from far up,
as if orchards were dying high in space.
Each leaf falls as if it were motioning “no.”
And tonight the heavy earth is falling
away from all other stars in the loneliness.
We’re all falling. This hand here is falling.
And look at the other one. It’s in them all.
And yet there is Someone, whose hands
infinitely calm, holding up all this falling.
~ Rainer Maria Rilke
I Love Autumn and the Shade of Meanings
I love autumn and the shade of meanings.
Delighted in autumn by a light obscurity,
transparency of handkerchiefs, like poetry just after
birth, dazzled in night-blaze or darkness.
It crawls, and finds no names for anything.
Shy rain, which moistens only distant things,
(In such autumns, marriage procession
and funeral intersect: the living
celebrate with the dead, and the dead
celebrate with the living.)
I delight to see a monarch stoop,
to recover the pearl of the crown from a fish in the lake.
In autumn I delight to see the commonness of colors,
no throne holds the humble gold in the leaves of humble trees
who are equal in the thirst for love.
I delight in the truce between armies,
awaiting the contest between two poets,
who love the season of autumn, yet differ
over the direction of its metaphors.
In autumn I delight in the complicity between
vision and expression.
~ Mahmoud Darwish
Music by Cass McCombs, “Harmonia”