October Elegy

For my student, Nate Osburn

When fall fell, so did you.
We were not ready for the drop,
The sudden parallel.
The leaves of all your papers, crisp,
Cling still to autumn limbs
Like dreams of your green mind.
Yellow-tinged I gather them
From deep inside the screens.
From wind and loss,
Rake gorgeous piles of words
That were and weren’t you,
But, ever after, worlds.
Your pages now the only places
Left to pause and play
In thought with you—
Brave you who flat refused
Personified paradox,
You for whom the human mind
Was always god enough
Yet never god.
And wasn’t yours a brilliant,
Kindly, honest one.


2 Responses to “October Elegy”

  1. A beautiful, heartfelt tribute, Rachel. So glad I got to hear you read it aloud!

    • wordweed says:

      Thanks, Joe, for bringing your own rich poems to open mic! Your deep humanity and authentic engagement with us helped get me through a tough day. I’m grateful.

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