on the first day of autumn, no bite in the air

there is chatter in the café, but not enough
to drown the silence in the kitchen, not
enough to distract from the sticky smudged drops
on the windows, which are
not enough to tempt the flies who gather instead
around the bar, by the open bottles, in your hair;
not enough hours to make something worthwhile, not
enough dollars to not worry; not enough rain
in the cotton-capped sky, not enough sincerity
to draw out a smile, not enough metaphor to hide,
not enough words not enough to explain,
not enough energy to run, not enough
to make her want to stay.

September is like a slow country song

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wherein i grow cozy in the glow of lies,
my skin safe, my breath a purr even
as fall falls, the skies deepening their blue:
cornflower, cobalt, sapphire; darken
to the slate of reckoning season, & i
have counted these shades before—
they are a luck charm to hang
over the headboard, a warding like the spray
bottle i use on the cat. our river spills
its tears over burnt summer
banks, burying the rocks in their sea-dreaming,
making bitter waterfalls of our riverpaths.
the gutters overflow, seeping into the walls,
leaving stains in the corners around the bed
where i watch the season change by the fade
of its tan lines.

Rainbows have no place in poems

Some days it is harder to love you
than others. Easter is over and done,
blossoms of bright azalea and snow-
white dogwood popping out around corners
like promises, but there are still so many crosses.
Afternoon thunderstorms rinse away
pollencoats under slaten sunlight, and you
point to the sky. Rainbows have no place in poems,
I think, wondering if happy endings are things
of myth, what secrets you still keep
as we lay beat to beat at day’s dying. My arms,
aching and taxed, reach with hesitance
in the darkness. I sleep drugged, dreaming
of escape routes, of a heart not so leaden to bear.