The Sere and Yellow Leaf
by Anne Britting Oleson


Something sad about a leaf:
the small yellowed one, hanging
from a low branch of the maple
in the front yard. Early. Perfect.
An overachiever trying to beat
the calendar, to mark the coming
of fall, in mid-August.
Wait! Have we missed summer?
A single five-lobed warning flag,
slowing traffic, first raising anxiety,
then sadness: so much undone;
so much done, but now all done.
A shock, like finding, at the bottom
of a sock drawer, a brittle yellow artifact
from the kindergarten autumn
of a long-grown child,
pressed between clouded waxed paper.







Copyright 2023 by Red River Review. First Rights Reserved. All other rights revert to the authors.
No work may be reproduced or republished without the express written consent of the author.