cross-quarter days

by Kitty Boots

did you manage to live within your harvest,
share your bounty by offering one perfect pear
wrapped in tissue to a friend,
or tart, winey apples cut in wedges,
break bread at a scarred wooden table?

embrace the autumnal rain of leaves
from trees naked, but not embarrassed
for they appear now as their true selves,
as do the pumpkins, caved-in, tired
sentinels in a frost-blackened field

make clean your hearth
sweep with a new broom
you'll need the heat and light

as you hang your resolutions
 with cedar and pine, resinous, sticky
 parasitic mistletoe shot out of gnarled trees

time to slumber, weave dreams
and worship each ray of a tired, pale sun