Raking autumn leaves 

the color of sea stars 

mottled on moist ground 


I watch them fall 

spinning slowly through blue sky 

as if the breeze was a tide 

ebbing and rising 


the rake feels like a paintbrush 

collecting color 

muddied by mixing 

into a fall palette 


a still life with fruit 

pears and apples still unblemished 

on branch attached 

but mushy and vinegar smelling 


our big white Pyr 

helps herself to fallen fruit 

laying claim to each orb 

her huge paws on either side 

moist nose buried 

in the rust of the Bosch 

the red of the Delicious 


we fill a wheelbarrow of leaf draped fruit

to bring below for coyotes 

we trap on camera 

motion sensed 

but motionless 


Malama the Pyr 

waits whining wondering 

if our chill morn together has ended 

but the leaves are piles of the fallen 

our task is not yet done 


more are gathered on tarp 

and dragged to garden bed 

to blanket wintersleep of bulb and tuber 

to feed in their decay 

the new blooms of a next spring day 


I have always raked 

far preferring the quiet metal combing 

through grassy tangled tufts 

over motored loud blower’s hum 

sending Moore's leaves whirling skyward 


but I am no longer  tempted 

to jump in the pile 

gathering armfuls whose yellow color 

is a child's crayon sun 

and toss them for a second fall 


no longer are they bagged  

in thick black plastic to wait 

decomposition amongst the landfill’s 

less pastoral refuse 


nor are they burned 

sending acrid leaf spirit smoke 

into the cold pale blue 

of October afternoon 


now their raking is not a ridding 

a discarding of what was season’s decoration

soon useless brown 

but more of a farewell 

a leaving of the light


an offering of what is still of use 

in the aged for what will be 

a period of cold and dark 

and winter's rest 

before the next season of green 


◄ Tired

Repost: Consequence-A Sestina Read by Mae Foreman ►


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Mae Foreman

Sun 3rd Nov 2019 18:21

That's what I love about your poetry dear Adam, that you start writing and the words take control of your pen! Incredible, once again! Kudos 🎈


Frances Macaulay Forde

Wed 30th Oct 2019 01:03

I should have said I believe the metaphor to be; the older ways - and generations, still have their uses... are relevant and shouldn't automatically be dismissed or surplanted.

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Adam Rabinowitz

Tue 29th Oct 2019 17:17

Thank you so very much for reading and commenting. Honestly I never really know where a poem is going to go...i write and then think what can this mean more broadly. It is a way I discover my own thinking. I am glad you liked it.


Frances Macaulay Forde

Tue 29th Oct 2019 02:05

This poem is so clever. Love the set-up:

"the rake feels like a paintbrush"

the descriptions - clever illustrations:

"a child's crayon sun"

and finally the metaphor exposed:

"an offering of what is still of use "

A very, very beautiful musing on the changing seasons of life and how the traditional ways are often the best.

Thank you, Adam, you have a very lucky garden.

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