"Trying to grip onto that last hope
with a signal that has been lost within."
I read this as the signal being the signal to make chlorophyll, and with the signal stopping the plants have no more access to food via sunlight, and the possibility of long-term hunger (for animals and humans, not sure about plants but counts since you're personifying it) is daunting and can be very stress inducing.
"Stimuli crashes on her skin,
she fights to grasp one,
she keeps missing."
Stimuli being the sunlight/water, and she attempts to make it use of it but with no chlorophyll, there's no use. I really like the way it's written, the diction is strong and paints a very clear image of what you intended.
"Her body wails,
I took the wails as wind or it could be the leafs themselves coming off, with autumn's arrival everything starts to damper down, and gives rise to cold snaps that are very taxing on plants (and people).
"Yet the marks on her
are running deep"
I took the marks as the roots running deep into the ground, and/or even the colourful leaves that arise due to the lack of chlorophyll.
"she is drying out."
A nice callback to the title, and cements the idea of autumn even more for me. I read this entire poem as the beginning stages of autumn, but it could also be read about nature (climate change), and even about a person. That's the beauty of this poem. Concise, strong, and open to interpretation. I'm glad that this poem is nominated! I also would like to know what meaning you intended for this poem :)
You do realize you went very deep with the interpretation? Michael felt it was nature, and you plants specifically. Having so many interpretations depending on the person means there was a connection, I love that.
Thank you so much :)