A clarifying positive: this leaf
so orange in mid-August, drifting down
on bluish late day breeze. Erratically,
it finds its way to puddled, muck-strewn ground
(a thunderstorm just passed). Inspires belief
in autumn soon. An odd trajectory,
the way it surges, pauses. Finds a sodden home,
this early color, sign-of-season crinkled flame.

And no doubt change is positive, the best
this world of atoms, molecules can do,
yet if bloom and greenery could truly last,
that's solace from a world that's stable, too.

She's gone and you don't have a point of view
on metaphysics -- time's a simple thief --
except to glance from leaf to orange bird,
a striking bird whose song you've never heard;

you gaze and gaze long after that bird flew
to deeper woods, where summer's never through.