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Tawny Autumn Leaves

"Tawny autumn leaves" is a lovely turn of phrase by Henry James,

yet I prefer the tired, bleached-out leaves of late summer.

The party is over, and they no longer have to try so hard.

August is like the faded beauty of a spinster who has unexpectedly become an heiress,

and she can settle into decaying luxury on her own terms.

June boasts lawns so fresh and green, and full of potential, to lure us in.

And July definitely has something to prove with water sports, exotic blooms, and wanton ways

that assert there is no room for modesty.

Time is running out, and we must frolic like our lives depend on it.

Who isn't totally exhausted by mid-August? The leaves

seem content in their desiccated state, white as bone,

relieved that another generation of foliage

will carry the banner of color into fall.

Let me lie here on the sidewalk a little longer.

By Robin M Tovey, 2023


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