The Echo of What Remains Collected Poems of Wanda Lea Brayton
Under heavy, gray light of autumnal skies,
we peruse minutiae, seeking some sort of reprieve
from the prowess of tinges and timbres,
their reticient implications we'd much rather rescind -
we've become less resilient than we once were,
more myopic, less inclined to grandeur,
appearing to be predisposed to cynicism
as garish, stark landscapes succumb
to broad, persuasive and insistent strokes of northern winds
as they strip sturdy boughs of tender foliage,
uncovering abandoned nests of fledglings far afield.
Resolute in our foolishness, our providence arcane,
we gather bundles of kindling, unpack sweaters thick with intention,
stock our paltry pantries devoid of reason
and rock quietly in dim, flickering corners,
forsaking the retreating sun's refusal to remain
dappled on our porches or linger in crisp, disintegrating gardens.
How sad we must seem, since we are no longer children
astride bicycles, anticipating summer's lazy freedoms,
wishing for long, deep snow days, untethered from those fetters
of enforced education. No, we have things to attend to,
work to be done, bills to be paid, duties to perform,
a constant enacting of rituals we used to believe in so fervently.
Now our shoes fit and we wear them too carefully, expecting them
to last more than a season, avoiding the sudden joys of puddles
that long to be stomped in, soliciting unexpected laughter
pealing like bells of bright adoration we have forgotten
because we are grown.