And drifting to the soul of silence, yellow leaves
are falling on the call of alien winds and echoed cries;
are going, going on into the rustling trails
of sun-dried maple leaves, and still, where hushed they lie.
The light lies scarce on these forsaken worlds of peace;
the puddled skies drift on with an uncanny ease
on breezes empty as abandoned moth cocoons,
and wing away as steady as the day recedes.
Where bends the arching bow of distant worlds tonight?
But flinging stars could never fly within so brief
a time as far as does the home-sick soul in flights
of lonely yearning wholly given to this grief.
And yet this death again has overwhelmed itself
in beauty gentle as its sun; for still it weaves
upon the eastern sky a wave of quiet light,
and earth, though breaking, still this broken peace receives.
Gloria Kurtz lives among the maple trees by New York’s Lake Ontario shoreline. Occasionally she escapes from textbooks to trails or canoes, but otherwise she thrives among her posse of young students.
Photography by Kenneth Godoy