A rainy pavement lined by trees, orange leaves in autumn

Poem | Low Light

Happy autumn, everyone!

I have no witty takes, no posts on ‘why autumn is overrated’, no ironic stories to tell. This is the season that makes me feel the most. It makes me reflect, plan, slow down and speed up all at the same time. It’s beautiful on the inside and out. And who can forget those cosy jumpers?!

I am so happy to welcome autumn back into my life; wind, rain and all!

Last year I started writing poetry again properly and really focusing on working on my skills. The first poem I sat down and wrote properly – one rainy evening in the depths of the Lake District – was one in praise of this most wonderful time of year.

It was the first poem I ever shared with others and performed, too.

I submitted it for a poetry prize on a whim last month, and since it didn’t make the shortlist (I’m not even remotely shocked, don’t worry!) I thought I’d share it with my readers instead!

So, if you love autumn as much as I do, this one’s for you.

A rainy pavement lined by trees, orange leaves in autumn

Low light

The best memories are forged in autumn.

In the late months,
when the iron light hangs heavy
and the nights stretch, spilled in endless ink across the sky,
and the windows turn opaque with dinner and debate.

When the world is gilded in precious metals
at first glance; glimpses of ruby and bronze in steel,
beauty in bits as brightness hibernates, waiting
to stretch its legs and unfurl its tail.

When we wade through carpeted walkways,
oak exposed, weathered cracks crisscross across the clouds above,
and chimney-pot plumes perfume the air
with flying soot and embers.

When dark evenings snap
at the heels of diluted sunshine,
and conkers are crushed under wheels or saved,
strung and smashed with intent;
short lives cut shorter each season.

When musty jumpers, hauled from splintered drawers
stretch over knuckles, comfortable and safe,
snagging at misshapen seams, hiding
multiple sins beneath ribs and purls.

When boots rub bare ankles raw,
chilled against green rubber and damp blades
of grass, while jewelled skies bellow and boom,
and flames soar skywards
to devour rag-doll men.

When glowing gourds carved with ferocity
lie in wait, nested in doorways,
and sodden ground weeps underfoot,
trodden-down earth churned
thick as molten chocolate drunk on dreary days.

The best memories are forged in Autumn.

When time hangs, caught in beaded webs
glinting in sunrise and frost;
somewhere between what has already been
and what is yet to come.

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