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Autumn Glory

I stand on the pine needle rug

As leaves blanket the ground

Trees’ orange-tipped fingers

Gliding gently to earth;

Above in the drifting clouds

Swallows leave in flocks

Heading south for warmer days

As winter’s icy breath approaches;

The wind is fresh and clean

With the scent of vegetation

Sun glows low on the horizon

Shining orange through undergrowth;

As I look around in awe

I see nature’s elaborate palette

An artwork of red and gold

Painted over the forest canvas;

Evergreens stand tall with pride

Emerald as their companions blend

From yellow to orange to copper

And leaf litter crunches under my feet;

Squirrels gather their winter stock

Bury it deep beneath the ground

As fungi begin to show their faces

Shedding spores into the cool air;

I cannot see but I can guess

That underneath the leaf piles

Hedgehogs close their sleepy eyes

And fall into slumber ’till spring.


Claire Howland

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