November Cliches

So many hikes

described in endless cliches.

How do I describe anew the

pale boreal fingers

that stroke my cheek?

The milkweed pods

that burst and fling

the first flakes of snow

at my feet?

Above, the midnight serrated edge

of a vulture’s shadow

floats through a

chicory sky,

below, honeysuckle berries cheerfully

taunt the unwary.

We leave the woods,

bleached copper needles

carpeting the naked earth,

my mouth,

filled with cotton,

whispers the question:

how can I avoid the cliche?

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