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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & General Editor
Volume 10, Number 2, June 2016
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Mary Frederick Ahearn
Pottstown, Pennsylvania, USA


The Twilight of Such Day

. . . that time of year thou mayst in me behold . . .

Tired and talked out, our small adventure behind us, we travel the familiar road homeward. It's begun to rain, on-again, off-again, a gentle rain. Here in the countryside, the leaves glow—the gold of shag bark hickory, burnished brown oak, and scarlet swamp maple, all vivid in the gray air. "Autumn," you say, half to yourself. I nod and fall into reverie.

"when yellow leaves, or none or few do hang . . ."

in late autumn
the farmers' fallow fields
frost-touched and sere
beneath the newly widened skies
host the last blackbirds

Time has pulled us along, granting new freedoms as it has given those retiring from desk or counter before us. Like us, perhaps, they took to the road until the day it led them home. They wait, somewhere not too far away, to welcome us at the journey's end.

"upon those boughs which shake against the cold . . ."

shadows of leaves
against dying grasses
a pause at the lych gate
before we enter at last
offering a parting prayer


Author's Note: Title and quotations from Shakespeare's Sonnet 73.

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