After (Litter) Fall by Gregory Palmerino

After (Litter) Fall

My winter is nothing like an old man
who gripes and broods over the rags of fall,
worn out clothing stitched by summer’s hand,
whose weedrobes trip the light ephemeral:
a final dance of deciduous waste,
when light and color step over the brink
from nature’s first green to autumn’s posthaste
to fashion an interstice out of sync.

My winter is like a woman, instead,
who weaves lost fibers into living yarn.
With season as form and color as thread,
my lapsarian seamstress comes to darn
a fertile garment round her lover’s feet
so colloid and crystal at last can meet.

by Gregory Palmerino, first published in The Road Not Taken (pdf link)

Editor’s note: This sonnet turns the usual winter trope inside out with skillful use of personification and imagery. The result? Something new at the volta when speaking of winter: fertility.