Between rising thunderheads,
a shaft of harvest sunshine
spreads heat across my hardwood floor,
splashes autumn light into the room.
Luminous droplets of honeyed light
splatter the pages I am reading,
so that even Plath and her bees
seem full of offered cheer.
Distressed by old imaginings,
needing to purge dark ghosts,
I watch the dust dance
in the pillars of sun-pulse,
summon my dependable counselors:
Auden, Neruda, Collins, Nye.
Not even their lines of assurance
are enough to dispel my stormy thoughts.
Outside, after spilling the gold
of their October optimism, the clouds
I have followed all afternoon
gather their own swelling sorrows
under a blanket of gray flannel,
darken and, like me, contemplate
a good cry.