With her Dress of Apples and Fiery Leaves

Karem Barratt



I am sitting by the veranda,

Watching the Autumn come,

With her dress of apples and fiery leaves,

And her perfume of maple syrup and roasted nuts,

Her walk a leap, a glide, a soft breeze,

Mapping the tiny river of the ants’ stride.

A basket in her hand, I see,

Full of glorious dreams and hopes

That have come to be,

Shiny, sweet fruits of all our visions and strife.

By my side, ewe cheese and red wine;

Warm bread; roasted garlic and butter squash spread.

Autumn stops to talk to the squirrel and the swan.

She caresses the swallow before its flight south,

Embraces the fluffy rabbit

And kisses the grasshopper good-bye.

I look around me and a tender sensation

Makes my shoulders drop.

Life is good. Lessons have been learned.

Projects have been achieved, new ideas

Are taking shape. There is hope in my soul;

There’s contentment and strength, all my scars,

Medals of war, reminding me that if they are there

Is because I have healed.

Autumn orchestrates a magic spell

And whisks her wand of grains

To make the wind yield a tingling whirl,

Which turns me into cool champagne.

Resentments gone, harvest picked,

There’s really no one to blame.

All have been teachers and lifetime comrades-in-arms.

All are part of my history, and my history is already past.

There’s a soft wool shawl hanging on my neck

And cowboy boots on my feet, ready to dance.

There’s much more life in Autumn than

Many actually guess. There are fireworks,

Not form heaven, but from earth.

The tale is not finished. Many adventures lie ahead.

But now is a time to celebrate. To prepare for the

Reviving darkness that will bloom new life in spring.

To admire the golds and oranges and reds

In which Autumn paints the landscape,

Like candles in the night, Chinese lanterns

Illuminating the village fete.


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