Autumn Come

Down here in Georgia, I thought it would never come. Every day I wondered how hot it would be this time. Wasn’t minding it so much because the peaches were still coming in fresh and golden. Sun handed us peaches with one hand, ripe and sweet like biting into a ball of soft honey. With the other hand, it jammed it’s fingers into the gears of AC units and despotically demanding libations poured in his name. Loyal grasses bent and broke with their bending. Trees flush with light rushed to store up all that heat until their time in the sun would change. A___ and me were talking logn and hard about how things would change so fast we wouldn’t even know it. Soon, the work would come in, the contracts owed would wind their way to my door, and all the sewing done in the heat would come time for reaping.

Change came. A storm blew through in the night. I got laid down by it, deep in my bones, clearing out all the old heat in the deep bones. Had to sweat ’em out. By the time I came to, A____ had a new job in the city, and I had new contracts coming down my way, and everything, everything, everything had changed.

The cold wind came, not biting, yet, just chewing at us a little — tasting us before the cold days come. The wind and rains came to overthrow the sun. This coup may not last, but it’s here at last. We pull out our rain coats, think of pumpkin pies and warm tea by the fireside.

This new paradise, this new dominion of the rains, we celebrate it here.

This morning I inspected my last peach. It had caught the damp rot like I had. It never recovered. I dropped the rotten fruit into the trash and that was that.

Like all good despots, Autumn will wear out his welcome soon enough. For now, we throw damp ticker tape parades in the streets, where the trees throw their leaves down, and cover our heads with umbrellas and hoods. Do not walk bareheaded in the presence of our new king, Autumn Come.

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