A Walk in the Rain

The Day before the Equinox 

Despite the threat of rain on the last day of summer
I take an evening walk down Laurel Fork Road
noticing the seasonal changes.
along the edge of the hayfield
where the staghorn sumac and dogwoods have turned red. 

The green leaves of the maples and oaks in the forest beyond
have already lost their luster,
while golden rods brighten the ditch banks 
next to Queen Anne, who has rolled her lace into a ball 
ready to stow in the drawer for winter. 

At the cemetery by the Primitive Baptist Church
an eight-point buck stops in the middle of the road,
looking at me for the longest time
as if wondering what I am doing out in this mess
 before jumping off the road and over the gravestones.

The drizzle becomes a rain shortly after passing the church,
but as I leave the payment for gravel, 
the hayfields for the dense woods,
the rain is not as noticeable until a breeze shakes the trees
shedding its accumulated moisture on me.

I continue, zipping up my rain jacket, 
but return earlier than I’d like, in the fading gray,
for there will be no full harvest moon to guide me tonight
as tears now pour from the sky,
each drop pinging off my jacket and into my ears.

Yet, I’m delighted when I get close enough to my lane,
with water running down my bare legs,
 to be greeted by cheerful Halloween faces
painted on the sides of three round haybales
in front of my neighbor’s field. 

My neighbor’s “jack-o-lanterns” taken today in the rain

12 thoughts on “A Walk in the Rain”

  1. What a beautiful poem, Jeff! You captured that brief moment before autumn comes, when leaves lack luster and goldenrod and dogberries reign. I can feel those tree drops pinging in my ears. You reminded me of so many walks in the eastern woods. Thank you! It’s still hot here, and due to drought and heat, I think our fall colors are going to be muddy not vibrant. May you have lots of time to wander in nature this fall!

  2. Best thing ever, a walk in the rain can lift our spirits, well unless you’re in a downpour straight from work and your umbrella is safely staying dry in your car! Your adventures and wisdom always brighten my day! Stay safe and happy and enjoy your week ahead!

  3. What a great post … I really felt as if I was with you!
    I do like this time of year.

    Wishing you a happy Autumn/Fall.

    All the best Jan

  4. What a beautiful picture you painted. I wanted to be there, walking down Laurel Fork Road. Loved the faces on the hay bales. It’s truly time for Halloween, and that is really exciting.

  5. Lovely indeed. I felt as if I were walking with you. We’ve had days of rain, as in torrential, flash-flood like downpours. But it is gone now and with its exit has come a beautiful blue sky and crisp autumn breezes. The best time of year.

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