Due east across the Deerfield
Mt. Massamett’s trees succumb

A cool and windy rain’s undone
the failing grasp of leaves to limb,
sap slows, and chlorophyll’s as gone
as pigment in an old man’s hair

Yellows and reds
have all gone brown
and leaves lie underfoot
dry and spent in layers
deep as dreams blown

But on Rt. 2 below–
to a ten-wheel rig’s
upshift growl–
a swift Harley gargles
a sustained deep-throated note
that dopplers up from

there and there to here
then down from
here to there and

until the sound, like smoke, disappears
around 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 the rule of
friction and inertia, to be

in a rush of wind
and joy.

Jim Culleny; November 2007