Sometimes you wish to curl up
Inside the skin of something lost, perhaps a grape
still hanging on the vine after the frost
where you can soak up the autumn sun
and sip its sweetness slowly past the equinox.
All the hands that missed you, all the birds,
all the wasps that flew by,
all the tiny microbes of mold and rot
did not find you all summer long…
The vines are almost bare, and wildlife retreats
into the ground, or to the south, except the winter birds,
Except the winter birds who sail the warmer tufts of air
and stare down the remnant vineyard fruits from high above.
There is always a predator, and the flesh of fruit
is hardly a good place to hide.
But for awhile at least, to hang onto the summer
is pleasure enough, to feel the drapes of falling leaves
graze against the skin as the cool wind comes slowing drifting,
winter wading, drifting in,
wading into the vineyard.