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Cusp of Autumn

We sense the cusp of autumn
in the valley; field grasses
are summer dry and no longer
support the hollow-boned weight
of sparrows. Only forget-me-nots
lining roadside ditches
have their thirst slaked.

Soon chimneys will exhale
wood stove elegies;
I'll wear sweaters, not cotton,
and maples, a red-orange dowry.

September 7, 2000

Donna Smith

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