The first morning after the killing heat ends,
after you’ve gotten through what you didn’t think you could endure,
after the pear tree dies, the long field fades into the sun,
it changes. The cool air brightens the blue of the sky.
The trembling Osage Orange tree shines. The new surge
of fall shakes shadow and sunlight together on the concrete drive.
There is no place to yearn for, no necessary escape or long nap
in a dark room. There’s only the early monarch, wavering
on the yellowed sunflower stalk, the old crickets in the woods,
the ready wind across your face, saying, welcome back.
This is what you aim your heart toward, this return of ground
and sky, the homecoming of the broken and breaking, the arrival
of another season in which whatever you live for turns
and faces you with open arms.