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The Strangest Time

by Mary Lambert

Today, the voice of autumn speaks.
Large, rusty leaves wing their way
to the ground, happy to join the remains
of their kind for the fall passing.
The bite of frost, hidden by the sun's clarity,
has missed the Lobelia near my door,
allowing them to share their royal color
one last time.
The sun, thin lipped but clear,
keeps its lack of warmth in check,
perhaps to assist foliage with its task
of dissolution.
One can hear hushed, final prayers amidst
the snapping of small branches.
This mysterious time of year blends
the sun's watery smile with the
demise of all that has gone before—
a vast, final goodbye.
The mind turns on a slow hub,
attempting to grasp this passage
which equalizes beauty and death.
When the bloom of life falters, we too
will gather rust amidst turquoise veins
and graying hair.
When the time comes, we too will pray
amidst autumn's incense, our heads bowed
in awe of its beautiful demise.

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