Night thinks it’s crying again by Kelli Russell Agodon

and I keep listening to a song about autumn 

where an apple tastes like longing and every leaf 

in the maple tree tries to explain loss

through a series of colors—hectic orange,

indifferent red, a kind of gold that speaks

directly to God or moonbeams and in the dark

as I drive down wet roadways watching for deer

the only things I can see clearly

are the yellow leaves christening

my windshield and I think how we are taught

not to love too many, too much, the night,

the darkness, and I believe I am crying but it is

only rain.

Night thinks it’s crying again

It’s raining here where I am tonight and the idea of night thinking it is crying intrigues me, makes me want to know more. There is a song about autumn where an apple tastes like longing. There’s that word again, longing, that yearning we may not be able to articulate that sometimes comes with this season.

Where other poets might speak of the brilliant hues of autumn, Agodon tells us that every leaf / in the maple tree tries to explain loss through their changing colours. We’ve all recognized the hectic orange, but a gold that speaks directly to God or moonbeams – that stopped me in my tracks and threw all my commonplace descriptions out the window.

She says we are taught / not to love too many, too much. What does this mean? Is she speaking of the loss that these falling leaves embody? I believe I am crying but it is / only rain. Perhaps she wants us to know that this is a loss that is seasonal, not a time to grieve for this natural ending – no tears; it is only rain.

13 thoughts on “Night thinks it’s crying again by Kelli Russell Agodon

  1. Another delight awaiting to be ‘taken in’, helping me move into the change
    “Indifferent red” – my heart says No!- I think of ‘fierce courage’ – a ‘look at me’ ‘I too light the way into change- in all my glory
    So the poet and I dance with the poem
    Thankyou for this, a deep bow – xo

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  2. What an intriguing poem…which is what I love about good poetry. Not easily understood, yet with language that ‘stops you in your tracks’ and makes you mull it over the whole day long. Thanks, dear Jan!

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  3. It is a stirring poem, but I am troubled by “we are taught not to love too many, too much.” I don’t know what that means. Is it an anti-diversity statement (not that she is going along with this). But the only way I can think of as being “taught” not to love is not to love “them.” So this jolts the loveliness of the poem for me.

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  4. I am touched by this poem. It stirs me up inside – like the leaves. Mary Lou’s word – intriguing… fits perfectly. Thank you Jan. 🍂

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  5. Oh Jan, how beautiful her descriptions and her new perspective. Thank you.

    Margaret 613-725-6941 Home 613-795-9879 Mobile

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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