overlong falsely inflated, the thermometer at last takes a seasonal plunge. that fickle friend the tshirt sun that’s lingered, luring us to display ourselves to a wide-open sky, beats a sudden exit in a shower of red and gold. last luminous leaves shudder thinly, pinned to black branches, etched vivid against a slate sky. both the dog with his trivial fur even I with my excess girth grown round my middle through months of dolor, learn to bundle ourselves better for morning walks through a landscape that could pass for postapocalyptic. the time of year when raising the shades renders little shine, only grey light cast overall. we turn to yellow lamps and fleecy throws, huddle ourselves around cups of tea, run endless streams of steam to soak in, and nurse the potted greenery with draughts of tapwater against the want.