A city cat
chose a sunny spot
in the food forest
the afternoon
of this first-freeze,
late-Novemer Sunday.

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By then
sun had warmed the chill
and the cat wasn’t the only one
out among the sunlight and the trees.
We humans too
were out—
some in Oklahoma City’s Edgemere Park—
taking in the flabbergasting beauty,
the mystery,
the wonder;
gratefully bearing briefly
the unkeepable impact—
that soaring vigor raging in the chest—
when standing amid light and leaf.

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There is a beautiful
autumn…
mild temperatures,
sunny, cool, slightly breezy days,
chilly, clear nights,
bright air,
a cloudy hour here and there,
a little rain…
The first freeze
was three days ago.
Frosty white grass
and 32 degrees at 7 a.m.
But it’s been warmer,
sunny mostly
since.
And with a little more rain,
grass is still greening,
while dried tall grasses
drop their seeds,
silently planting
for another year.
Crickets still sing
in low places.
There are still Cicadeas!
in the Willows.
A Scissor-tailed Flycatcher
perches atop a dried sunflower
in the pasture.
Cottonwood leaves
wiggle and whoosh
in the wind.
Some kind of cocklebur
turns from silver
to purple.
Soft mounds
of wild white asters
flow beneath the fence line.
There is a new,
prodigious,
crop of tiny grasshoppers
and I also disturb
pairs of small yellow butterflies
that flutter up out of the grass
as I walk through the prairie,
touching home.

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