Now is the time when earth cracks her skirt like a whip and sends her dress up in flames The place where she strips down to her bones and dances fiercely with the stars Where instead of bundling up against bitterness she throws down her ashen cloak and covers ground with softness as air-akin as moth. Where she turns her naked face to the outer dark seared by stars and eyes of owls with sight so keen no mouse is safe in its warmest, most secret, most carefully padded nest Where all the labor of harvest comes to naught and death flies on furred wings across winter steal to grinning, starry heights Where she pauses to sing among bare barked trees that glow brown as dove breasts, and mauve as dusk, “It has ended! It has ended!” Then she rests, mute and hard, seemingly for eternity before she has to put her shoulder back to the sun-warmed, moss covered, millstone of life.
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