Leaves can’t keep secrets

Green or brown,

They whisper and tattle and dance

On the branch,

Taunting those who do not know

The source of their revelry


Leaves love to keep silent

Most of all,

When the guide-wind has gone and you

Are alone,

Standing in the heavy-hot air

Without a word


But leaves fall when the air is light

And words return when their time is right


I heard a murder in the woods today

the muddy creek cackled

as it gathered


The old leaves rattled with half-hearted lies

cawing control of the red sky

and upturned dirt


Though a lone shadow circled

and circled

and circled

as if counting the cost.