Poetry — 3rd Place
How November Never Shines Straight Down
by Mary O’Dell
The dust of this day
these trees this slant sun
Have you noticed
how it leans
how it sidles into morning
into evening lying down
melancholy even at noon
as if it has nothing better to do?
Do not be concerned with the dust.
But you are no longer taut and teachable,
your life no longer open-ended,
running barefoot into dewy morning.
Step easy lest the ankle turn,
the vertigo take
and send you sprawling.
This sky of gray/brown leaves
this grass full of crispness
and larvae nesting down in a hedge against snow
This blue blue enough to blind you
Your future is not necessary.