Like small suns, they brighten the street,
gilt maples—O the glow of them,
the aura they cast—
until wind loosens in handfuls
weightless coins to float
to the ground, to spread over grass
and street, overlapping layers
of golden scales
slickened by rain
cushioning footfalls, transforming the earth
to a gilded beast.
Diligent keepers will scrape it bare,
rake it naked, so it almost pleads
for another protective coat—
this time, blazing white.
© by Phyllis Wax.
Used with the author’s permission.