Now and Then
Golden, red, brown—
when they begin to loosen and come down
I hear my mother say
“Each caught leaf promises a happy day
Have you tried to catch
these autumn flutterers?
Almost all elude your snatching
though one may settle on you unawares.
Now I don’t need
such magic fancies.
Any leaf which dances
off its tree for me may reach the ground.
I have found
a sounder spell. Our love.
There will be days, not enough—
rather, not many, but so good,
so satisfying, enough’s irrelevant—
after the last leaf follows its crooked trail
to carpet the bare wood,
days in any season of them all
when you and I shall
be with one another and content.