Elegy in October

Frannie Lindsay


Suggest we meet inside the library.
The afternoon, aflutter with children
downstairs, sitting Indian style to hear
a story. The college students slumped
across their carrels, pretending not to
check each other out. Aren’t hormones
gorgeous? Don’t you wish we could
still wear their great, embarrassing
corsages? For all of us are dying.
Fall is drowsing in accordance, agonal
and golden in the birch above
the courtyard. Come, and drape
your shadow’s pilled, unsalvageable cardigan
across the wing chair I have nestled in
to riffle pages. Come while no one knows
I am expecting you.  For I can’t
stay long either.

FRANNIE LINDSAY’s books of poetry include If Mercy (The Word Works, 2016), Our Vanishing (Red Hen Press, 2013), Mayweed (The Word Works, 2009), Lamb (Perugia, 2006), and Where She Always Was (Utah State University Press, 2004), chosen for the May Swenson Award by J. D. McClatchy. Her sixth collection is forthcoming next year from CavanKerry Press. She is also a classical pianist.

image: Jacob Lawrence, The Library, 1960, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of S.C. Johnson and Son, Inc, 1969