Truth is a thorny branch under lush
leaves goaded by summer.  

Then autumn arrives & crumbles
leaves to crisp debris—  

landscape-context becomes clear,
thorn pricks our white flesh, & we cry  

What sorcery is this?
But the truth is that the meat  

of trees & skin of limb
have always been bare  

under the green lies
we heap on them.  

The splinters that invade
our fingers have been uncurling  

for over two centuries.  For some
autumn never fades  

into the arms of summer,
leaves cannot cushion,  

& landscape does not entertain
untruths.  Yet all they want  

to do is to widen viridian
wings, explode into a sheet  

of feathered umber & a flight
fraught with stormy clouds  

heading in someone else’s
direction over trees  

hung with moss.