My favorite tree

dyed itself amber overnight

where it found its overtone, 

from muddy roots or sooty sky, 

I couldn’t know

Its covert shift, so unforeseen,

morphing in the span between 

my early rest to groggy rise, 

its yellow struck me paralyzed, 

its vibrancy sunkissed my eyes


like it sponged daylight into its hand—

pressed its thumb into morning 

and let the coming, cooling hours 

coat its fingerprint.

It nicked the tail of summer

with its longest branch

to catch its golden blood 

thick and heavy across its leaves—

summer will heal while it hibernates, 

I will echo its memory, meanwhile


its base still brunette, 

its pyrite canopy glistens

against the bulk of it, 

across the overcast of fall. 

I am a ghost

and my favorite tree is a shadow

of a season in passing, 

its curls gripping to the last warm day, 

a call and retreat,

the dye strips its fullness—

its thinning hair, daylight in deplete reserve.