October twilight

when you must get up early
to put the trash to the curb
because you forgot to do it
the evening before—and—yawn—
it’s still dark, but the sun is hinting
at its existence, low on the horizon
and there’s a fresh chill in the air
with Sirius & Orion hunting Mars
by the light of a hunter’s moon—
suddenly it’s no longer a chore
but glorious beautiful happiness

—Terri Guillemets

Autumn’s clock

In the wheel of Earth’s years
we watch as Autumn’s clock

Tick-tocks in tiny goldenrod
September petal’d seconds

Frosty trees bleed scarlet hours
through veins of October leaves

Amber minutes wither and fall
drifting in November’s breeze

And the silent strike of midwinter
turns December’s snowflake gears

—Terri Guillemets

Lost in thought

We’ve lost, we’re losing,
it’s so much loss, too much.

But the clouds are rolling
and the breeze is blowing
and nature is so beautiful
and the dried delicate leaves
are doing their dance of balance
between hanging on and falling away
amidst their wintry shiverings —

they love the wind
for helping them let go —

they fall to the ground
and the gentle rain comes
and helps them nourish the earth.

A gray bird lands on a bare gray branch
both unadorned, yet so, so beautiful.
And the leaves are drifting
and our lives are drifting
and loss is just another form of beauty.

—Terri Guillemets

Barely knowing

Spring and summer come with a lush layer of foliage over reality, but when things start falling away in the autumn and get bare and stark in the winter we’re forced to look at things more as they really are, including ourselves.

—Terri Guillemets

October-blood

come scarlet leaves and falling light
this time of year — October-blood
runs through the veins of autumn —
slowing heartbeat and longer breaths
shorter daytimes and chilling nights
warm hearts and sanguine thoughts

—Terri Guillemets