Lois Marie Harrod

Leaves Fall like Lapsarians

Woman with Autumn Leaves by Andrew Stevovich

During July, August, too early for grace
the willful ones, wily goats, the desperate
refuse to live. You see them, a leaf,
a lamina, disobedient maple, wild cherry

crimson before its time, you can’t blame
it on sex, you can’t blame it on women,
the early falls for which there is no explanation—
the child who tumbles off his tricycle

and inexplicably dies, you understand
a lightning bolt, the slow rust in Eden, but this?
Nearby the yellow pines with their fidgety needles
sew aprons, something to breech

the tumble to dust. The heat increases.
The cicadas begin their noisome hum.
It’s in the air. The end, but not the end of time.
Not yet. Keep me as the apple of your eye.


About the writer:
Lois Marie Harrod’s 16th and most recent collection Nightmares of the Minor Poet appeared in June 2016 from Five Oaks; her chapbook And She Took the Heart appeared in January 2016, and Fragments from the Biography of Nemesis (Cherry Grove Press) and the chapbook How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth (Dancing Girl Press) appeared in 2013. She is published in literary journals and online ezines from American Poetry Review to Zone 3. She teaches at the Evergreen Forum in Princeton and at The College of New Jersey.

Image: Woman with Autumn Leaves by Andrew Stevovich (1948-). 36 x 72 inches. 1994. By free license.