Rough Thoughts on the Stratigraphy of Small Streams

October afternoon:

The fate of a single alder leaf

Drifting down,

might have been sealed

Long before the tree.

.

Now

Is less about early afternoon breezes.

More about lingering mornings,

Not yet ripe and flavored

With neatly packaged memories of summer.

.

This leaf floats through air

not yet lacquered in winter,

But stained with the patina of a mid-day sun

That hides swimming holes and watermelons.

.

Still,

This is time for one more earful of cricket song,

frog speak,

Stinging mosquito bite.

.

Where the leaf lands,

tastes of dust in cool woods.

.

Creeks move in tiny whispers here,

If they haven’t gone forgotten.

.