by Patricia L. Hamilton

Another calendar page flips over
and you notice the poplars
you walk toward every day
on your constitutional--
antidote to surly knees
and wayward blood pressure--
look slump-shouldered,
as if the full weight of middle age
were sagging their branches
You’ve seen this before--
hair thinning, bones growing brittle,
yellowing leaves curling
along the edges. You’re tempted
to resort to clichés--
it’s all downhill from here--
but when the cul-de-sac spools you
back around toward home,
you realize the road is as flat as ever,
and the sun's slow drift
toward its dreamy purple bed betokens
the most brilliant sunsets imaginable
lie ahead.

Illya's Honey Literary Journal

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