Six Lists in November

by Dana Wilde

the wind riffling dead grass
   waves in the blue water
   brown leaves hanging from bushes
   milkweed feathers:
the last exhalation of life, this time.

the wind bruises my nose
   the water beats a sailboat toward the beach
   oak leaves run like little kids in droves
   bright red berries falling off bare branches:
it turns & takes its last look at the cottage.

we used to hunt in these woods.
   we stepped on brittle twigs,
   we brushed through pine needles,
   we saw squirrels with their mouths full of acorns.
we teetered on the edge of winter with the bare poplars.

the cold clear air shows up the northern cross
   pindrifts in the sky, a bright one, Vega
   half the moon dumping light into the sea
   Orion’s belt & another bright one, Sirius:
the late illumination of the sky this time.

thirteen geese in a chevron
   a gang of seagulls
   a chickadee among some naked branches
   four crows circling over a grove of pines
the last southern sunlight stuns their wings.

a black & red wool jacket
   heavy socks and gloves
   a sweater in the shade, a shirt for sunlight
   hats & freezing ears:
turn, turn, turn,   change or fade, adjust or die; adjust.