by Caitlin Cacciatore

two years’ worth of autumn leaves have buried
the love we shared in a shallow, roadside grave.

I knew from the start that I’d leave, and you’d
let me without protest, that the first and final

frost would come early; the last roses of summer
turning their faces away from the sun in shame.

two years later, summer has wasted on the vine;
many creatures came to drink as the windfalls

turned to wine. I wanted to believe you to be
flightless, but your wings filled up the room.

migratory birds fled to warmer climes, geese
honked their way down the shore; gulls called

out and even the sun knew something I didn’t;
it was October and I stood on the verge of losing

you. that fall was endless. now I remember
you like a rose – the thorns still draw blood long

after the petals have all fallen. that is how
I remember you; your celestial body spinning,

spiraling away from me, on a collision course
with an eternity that no longer transited mine.

Image by Suzy Hazelwood via Pexels