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Oswego River Silence

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Summer goes abandoned.
The October-strewn ditchbank
runnels beside my path,
sparing my footfalls any echoes.
Nothing glows but late asters and goldenrods.

The only words I’d speak
would be unwise counsel to no one,
certainly not the cardinal or hawk
who refuse all autumnal vectors south.

I am borne along in a light rain
that emerges like a rumor
wrapped in a whisper.

Like the woman’s voice
I let fade this morning
asking me to leave,
the widening light
splintering her doorway.

JC Alfier’s (they/them) most recent book of poetry, The Shadow Field, was published by Louisiana Literature Press (2020). Journal credits include Faultline, New York Quarterly, Notre Dame Review, Penn Review, Raleigh Review, Southern Poetry Review, and Vassar Review. They are also an artist doing collage and double-exposure work.