Repeat. Copper-crimson; wade of leavings;
leafy spray; pepper-piss display;
all just the sleight of hand of loss.
Repeat to fade. Tawdry month!
Sickly promise of gold. Again, the days
crumpled to a catch in the throat.
Sigh, late whimpering summer, rehash yourself.
The early, encoreless departure of the band;
bad sex month – coming like a clearing of a throat.
O petty petite-morte! Plumed with guilt,
the broken backs of bovine hoards gone back to school;
the dawning chill of cheery men who, now we know,
will not be home by Christmas.
It makes the hot preceding happiness
no more than necessary for descent.
Make kissing simply separation’s prologue
and light the brief exception to the dark.
And that they are. And they are not.
Month to believe that a jealous god is watching:
He knows your worth and strips you of blessing.
Month of cauliflower breath; of light grown lean.
Demented month of moths; of dwindling birds;
the gale-licked strip-tease month of haggard trees;
of that was as good as it gets;
and bring out your dead; the stamping of feet.
The plaster sky is chipped. More than the leaves will fall.