Raking Leaves

By Peter Halstead

Face your dreams,
The ones with flying apes
As themes. Put away
The toys, the fears,
The desolate unmarried

Years. Let what seems
To be take hold. Shape
The scene with day.
Put away the souvenirs
Of truth, the harried

Glaze of war,
The tokens of your injured
Youth, clichéd in time
To rainy afternoons
And broken lives.

Focus rather on the roar
Of sun, the random bird,
Falling snow, the rhyme
And ripple in the dunes,
The throw that drives

The game, accidents
Of fortune, twists
Of flame, burning shadows
Into night,
The turn of chance,

Island air that hints
Of sea and mists,
Solar haloes,
The certain light
Of stars that dance

Like curtains in the wind,
The dreams of women,
Filled with presents,
Food, and children−
And realize

That leaves begin
In deeper seasons:
An accumulated essence,
A cosmic sermon,
Broken lessons in the skies.