Near Rusk
by Ann Howells

Sunlight trickles like rain.
Wetted maples glisten burnt orange;
sweet gums glow aubergine.
Acorns and spiked husks crack
as we shuffle autumn's confetti.
Near Rusk we pause
to admire a timbered trestle,
kettle-black engine bellowing,
billowing steam, as five
kicked-can passenger coaches
rinkity-rattle past.
You press a windfall apple,
hard and misshapen, to my mouth.
I lean into your rough-woven jacket,
bite into this crisp, October day.


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