Jan 4, 2019

Today’s poem is “Leaving” by David Sloan. David is a graduate of the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA Poetry Program. He teaches at Maine Coast Waldorf High School in Freeport. His debut poetry collection, The Irresistible In-Between, was published by Deerbrook Editions in 2013. 

David writes, “Having grown up in Southern California, I’ve always been in awe of the New England autumn, not just the riot of colors. I’ve come to appreciate the post-peak fall as a tribute to the preciousness of final days, the visual equivalent of an orchestra’s plaintive strings gradually drowning out the fading blare of trumpets.”

by David Sloan

The air feels filled with frankness today, 
a welcome inescapability, 
the leaves coppered, hammered, not hewn, 
thin enough to let light through.  
After the dazzle, the understated start 
of dwindling. Centers shrivel—the heart's
dying in earnest begins. No more strutting, 
struggle, averting of eyes, no fretting.
I, too, want no part of showing off. 
Give me earth-colored robes, if
taking a bow becomes bowing before...
what? Call it coherence—the air,
leaves, light, geese overhead, 
a rake leaning against a shed,
the self finally burnished, thinned, 
ready for a ripe and rising wind.

Poem copyright © 2013 David Sloan. Reprinted from The Irresistible In-Between, Deerbrook Editions, 2013, by permission of David Sloan.