In spite of rain

In spite of rain tumbling toward sleet,
the street half-hearted and gray
with envy of clouds, which take
their opportunity to jettison

sweet dying light,
the sun unhidden briefly, quickly,
and hustled back before any expectation
of warm rebuttal of fall can set in,

I know the trees live still,
though barren of celebration,,
I know beneath the crust that grass
and flowers grow, unheard, unseen,

I wonder at the thinness of sparrows
and the strength of their fires
on days like this that drive the mice,
beloved of field and furrow, indoors

to nibble in resignation
at the edges of mortality.