When the leaves are gone
twined arms and tangled fingers
sieve the sunrise light
into stained glass shards
that rise, fade, and seep into
a morning promise.
Spring, the pampered baby of the seasonal family,
spoiled and cossetted. Every sunny smile a miracle,
every quivering green leaf a first step. Even her sudden
warm tears are welcome and end in rainbows.
Summer, the simmering sister with the California smile,
all light and flowers and lazy self indulgence. The golden girl
that everyone wants as their friend. The seasonal
celebrity, paparazzi in her wake in campers and motorhomes.
Autumn, serenity with an edge, the generous big brother
with the fatalistic sense of humour. The sadness behind the
beauty of fallen leaves and soft winds. He shares his bounty freely
but behind each cornucopia lurks the knowledge that even he
can’t protect us from the other one…
Winter, the evil twin, all temper and disdain.
The long thin sneer on the calendar,
The ice tiger with a taste for frozen blood.
Howling paranoia that feeds on fear and rejection
piling wrath at our doors, gnawing exposed flesh
like a crazed piranha until, sated at last,
he expires into puddles at spring’s tiny feet.
The wet stuff.
The ‘S’ word.
Or, as I like to call it,
‘that white shit’
litters the parking lot.
The first warning shot of winter has been fired.
We pick our way
Bow our heads
Refuse to wear
our winter boots.
‘This will be gone by the weekend’ we declare.
And it will be.
The sun will shine
and the snow will melt.
But the wooly gauntlet
has been thrown down
making it hard to enjoy
what is left of a Peace Country Autumn.
Leaves crunch underfoot.
Summer’s bones litter and drift
into the hollows.
Autumn’s ripe red scent
steeps the air cranberry rust
with a hint of loam.
She wears a golden
gown, rustling taffeta
with red petticoats.
Twitching up her skirts,
she swirls, flirts with the old man
who stands in the door.
He catches her hand,
joins her in the dance, icing
her pretty gold gown
as they waltz the night
and he draws her close to him
‘neath his snowy cloak.
Now they drift away,
fall into a restless sleep
and dream of a child
crying to wake up,
fretting for flowers and leaves
to twine in her hair.
Autumn gives her child
sunshine. Winter gives his child
a pure mountain stream
and he names her Spring
and knows that one day Summer
will woo her away.
Then they’ll call their child
Autumn, after her mother,
and the dance goes on.