All through cicada summer
The leaves above my house like gossiping angels had sweet arms to cling to--
All along, they had the life May woke them up to,
And cardinal birds to sing them through the long sultry days.
All through July and August, the leaves looked down at the simple ground
With haughty superiority, unearned, a lucky gift--
Then the tree fell in love with October and sent her sugar no more,
Leaving the wind-turned leaves bereft.
To Mother Earth whom they had scorned.
My young friend and I come to rake them--
We take them away
As though they'd never been born.