The October poet

The poet stares at the once-verdant trees, now a mixture of green and yellow and emptying branches. He reaches for the words, but minutes go by and there is only the muddle. Was it this hard for Whitman, for Frost, for Dickinson, for Cummings, or did their hands simply dance across the page writing divergent paths and not stopping for death and just spring?

It all looked so easy on the page, those clever turns of phrase and sparkling images casting light against the darkness, but this is digging in soil, planting seeds and pulling weeds, this is hauling concrete to lay a foundation, this is clearing land and picking stones and creating a farmstead out of wilderness.

He chose to study words because he didn’t feel fit for physical labor, and now Herculean labors pose themselves merely to put a few dozen words on the page.

“I was misinformed,” Bogart said with a deadpan smile.

“Please allow me to introduce myself,” the Devil said, seeking sympathy.

As the sun rises behind the clouds, the trees prove to be more yellow than it seemed in the dark. Before the light came, the yellow had mingled with the memory of the lush green of summer, but this is the first of October, and though the TV meteorologist promises unseasonably warm temperatures today, we are entering the season of growing cold, and eventually brown and gray, and finally white.

Days are ahead when the idea of green leaves and warm breezes will be far-away dreams and the air conditioner will hibernate.

“And how is the weather?” sings an ancient Turtle, eerily, changing the subject from unrequited love.

“In Penny Lane the barber shaves another customer,” sings an ancient Beatle, painting a picture in the pouring rain.

And the ancient Stone keeps on Rolling.

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