under the August apple tree

under the August apple tree

the leaves,
excited
over news
brought ’round by the wind,

the stern green skulls,
Granny Smiths nodding in agreement–

‘”yes,” they say,
“yes, autumn in our sickly sweet,
our sugar blood;

autumn grows fat
on the labour of bees,”

“yes, YES!” the apples smile,
“we can’t hold on much longer,

the worms have taken our very best,

have turned to moths,

and now the moths are gone.”

somewhere the roots are sleeping
somehow the rot, the frost, the blight;

yet the apples hold,
each by a slender wrist.

oh, August,
you’re a breath blown out:
Ahhhhh-GUST,

you’re berry-stained skin.

but this is just news
brought ’round by the wind

and has little to do
with Death
resting in the shade.

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