After the year consumes the frenetic energy of its youth, Dances through the sultry encounters of its maturity, It is left to ponder. The young that it has borne slowly emerge into their own, And it may wonder what remains of and for itself. What is left to taste? It may consider what has been lost, what it will never regain.
But it may also recognize how all that it was exists inside it still, How it holds its former selves, wrapped in a cloak of reds, yellows, and purples. It may know what was gained could not have been without loss, One's death feeding the other's growth, inextricably entwining, Lush carpets of leaves woven with decomposition and redemption, Green shoots turned brown with the passing of time.
There is time still to enter the winter, When leaves drop away and ground crystallizes, And the year does not ignore inevitability. But neither does it pass too quickly On to it.
Instead, the year holds all within it, From bud to flower to fruit to nourishment. In the autumn, the year can recall, the year can anticipate. But most of all, it can recognize itself, And settle into savoring its own fullness.
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