We’ve gathered autumn acorns for the vase
We’ll fill with them—an ornament to place
On the tabletop.
We rest beneath the oak, our chill-stung lungs
Recuperating; down from knuckled rungs,
A brown leaf tumbles.
Corinne begins to pluck the woody caps
From their nutshells. Her cousin Lily slaps
The offending hand;
She says, Those perfect acorns . . . now they’re spoiled.
Corinne begins to cry; her humus-soiled
Fingers streak her face.
The sun grows red. The earth grows cold
Against our jeans. The year grows old.