east across the river
Mt. Massamett’s trees succumb
a cool and windy rain’s
the grasp of leaves to limb,
sap slows, and chlorophyll’s as gone
as pigment in an old man’s hair
yellows and reds have gone brown
leaves lie underfoot dry and spent
in layers deep as dreams blown
but on Rt. 2 below
a ten-wheel rig’s
upshift growl accompanies
a swift Harley’s gargles—
a sustained deep-throated note
that dopplers up from
there to here
then down from
here to there 

until sound, like smoke,
disappears round humped Catamount
whose foot slides out just so
to nudge the highway south enough
to let a rider, leather-bound,
swoop that curve
constrained only by rules
of friction and inertia,
to be 
in a rush of wind
and joy.

Jim Culleny
November 2007