i am the smell of rotting leaves and

i am the moist soft ground beneath them.

you are the joy in jumping and i,

i am the rotting.

 

the sweet peace of falling asleep

and forgetting this body

rings with the wind like a chorus.

will you tell me a story while i go?

 

you are the bright leaf’s dance as he

falls from the tree

and i am waking to watch the tree:

yellower than the sun and much louder.

 

on mornings like these,

i cannot distinguish between regret

and gratitude. i think they must both

swing wild in a banjo’s holler.

 

so i am missing wild brown hills

and wild dogs and your voice.

i am dreaming of sleepovers and of

lives well built.

 

in these dreams, i meet friends

in kindness and patience and

i meet strangers with love.

 

in this dream,

i am the rotting

and you are the fall.