It was still summer-late August-
But during the night, fall had crept in
For a preview.
Breath hung in the dawn air a moment
Before floating off
And mist settled on everything,
Dripping from mailboxes and signs
A few degrees from glazing.
An old farmer had risen early
Excited by the chill.
Thinking October thoughts of
Hunting and pumpkins
He drove his battered mostly red pickup
Rounding a bend his left rear tire came loose
Dropping the hub in a banging, grinding, sparking,
Skid into the asphalt.
The tire kept going
Across two yards, through a birdbath
And flowerpatch, splitting a fat rhododendron
Finally coming to rest with a thud
against the home of a chain stretching, growling, teeth baring
German Shepard named Leo.
The old farmer leaned against a fender
Of his listing, clicking truck
And lit a cigarette under the red sky.
It was going to be a good day.