It used to be that shades of red through brown
Tinting the sky signalled the start of the most colourful season,
With bright, orange shades, and crisp, fallen leaves, and
The coziness of warmer layers as reprieve
From the long, summer heat.
Walks in the park were a treasure hunt for colours,
Catching the last hint of green just before it turns.
The sun would glint off thinning trees,
Their autumnal beauty in late afternoon breathtaking,
Capturing many an artist’s heart.
Today, orange skies have a different meaning.
They promise no renewal, or comfort,
Only a lack of breath, a loss of home,
And a future that is now more than ever, unknown.
If we could,
We would pour our hearts and souls onto these fires
To soothe them,
We would divert all our tears of frustration and helplessness
Until the last ember was out,
We would shelter every last plant, animal, and person
Until they could put their roots down again.
Those in power fan flames
Instead of dowsing them,
Which is not to say we don’t need to do our part.
But it is to remind that it is not our burden
To carry the entire weight of the world on our two shoulders.
There are far bigger things at work
Than any one person can handle by themselves.
Autumn can be the time to remember we are not alone.
Let us be the community walking paths through our parks
With crisp leaves underfoot,
Let us gather in cafe corners, cosy
With warm mugs between our palms,
Let us be all the beautiful possibilities humanity can be
And rise up against those igniting all these fires.
This is our world, our future.
How about we work together in reclaiming it
One season at a time?
© M K Lee
From Eugi’s prompt Autumn Leaves.