The Beginning of the Fall

Autumn on the lake

I sweep autumn leaves from the porch
and listen to the crows caw
from across the dry meadow,
the only birds still in residence.

The trees are empty.

The birds have abandoned me.
Are there runes scraped into the bark of the cedar,
just outside the window?
‘Beware all life is fleeting, flee!’
Soon the mirrors will be covered
and voices hushed
in winters sorrow.

I miss their songs.

I miss feeling their presence-
the feathers left in my path
as if angels were near,
watching and protecting.
But the trees are now deserted-
all the winged creatures
have left.
Leaving me
alone to keep vigil
in the beginning of the fall.