Yellow, yellow, yellow / it eats through the leaves… —William Carlos Williams, “Love Song” Late November and gusts rock the oaks to groans. The living will find shelter: pygmy rattlers seeking ground palms for sleep, lizards scurrying into thorny hiding places, armadillos burrowing deep in suburban lawns. The heat will lift, at last, and so will the windows we’ve sealed shut for months. But the living will mourn, too—the crisp leaves, the late evening sun, the wild vines scaling concrete walls, now withering from cold. We will mourn all our loses, the death of a year, our chests closing like a snapper’s bite, our voices, too, yellow and silent as closed-fisted morning glories. Our mothers told us this will pass, this sadness, but even they are gone, and what remains is their memory, which fades, leaf by leaf. We cling to a future foggy and frigid as morning ponds where time’s incessant ticking will bring green back, will bring heat that sizzles skin and thaws the core of us. But remember, there is a poem in every leaf, the fall of it, its swish and sway on the current, the inevitability of a kiss at the end.