The Last of It
Sweet November, that fire beyond the trees
Is a tree itself, an oak in glory,
The last to shed, the last to close its eyes.
Ferocious, its long and indignant blaze
Against the day, refusing to concede
The point, no matter how frigid or dazed
Or bent by wind until its leaves are taken.
Wise from the seasons of a century,
It knows some sleeping things never waken.
All that evening the crackle
Of the neighbor’s fire pit
Came sharply through my window.
Some were sown as wheat, it said,
And some were sown as cockle.
In due season you will know.
I watched the sputtering bed
Of flames do its work below.
My heart feared the heart of it.
Daniel Patrick Sheehan is a journalist in Pennsylvania. His work has appeared in First Things, Dappled Things, Trinity House Review and other journals.