I was a knave in a quilted cape
that made me look kingly.
You were a redhead in a peasant
sundress and we wrestled in the grass,
bare shouldered, leaves scattered
in your hair, I pulled you closer, tilting
your head in my hand like Hamlet
caressing poor Yorick’s skull.
I tried to forget about death waiting
brown in the background of fall, listening
like Polonius behind a tapestry.
I kissed you with an alchemist’s
measure, turning those leaves to stars,
and it seemed like we were sitting
on the last lonely hilltop of summer.