COME NOVEMBER [revision #5]
I see less and less of sun and moon.
They nub low in the southern sky.
North, their capacious eraser. Less
and less of elm and maple leaves
kidnapped from driveway curbs
in heavy-duty 2-ply bags.
But high nests
I see more and more of. And stars
backlighting nests, and sneaker
laces hoaxing nested twigs.
from my car up on the county over-
pass I saw more of a long freight train
inching towards the Hudson port
than during my summer roadtrip
crossing plains to Michigan.
Horizon to horizon diminishing ends
of boxcars. How many?
Once I kept
careful decimal counts: gram,
acre, league, nautical mile. But now
it’s enough for my squinting eye
to guess: more or less than last
season? Or to know for sure, “gone.”
by Therese L. Broderick
NOTES: This poem was inspired by a car trip I took last Saturday. At one point on a county road, a very long train passed beneath me. Also in this poem are images from a recent nature walk I took: vacated bird nests revealed by fallen leaves; shoelaces in the nests. The counting theme is related to my propensity for taking account of details. As I grow older, I become less fastidious, more tolerant of mess and the indeterminate.