My corner eye thought they were birds,
but leaves, just detached from limb,
flickered and flipped a brief migration,
landed at wind’s discretion.
Soon dappled light will be replaced
by straight shadows clacking in birches,
those be-jangled enthusiasts of fall
and its golden, breezy air.
Then they were leaves,
but no, peep-piping birds fluttered,
re-leafing trees, dropping tenderly
onto bare branches, nestling softly
into needled pines.
Sun is softer now, air sharp,
a languid, restless token.
My paddle board caught the wind, too,
a leaf on the water,
detached from shore,
rippling down the cold lake.
I turned to go back.
What leaf would ever do that?
Published by Motherlife
I'm Sarah--mother of two daughters, 10 and 8, born in Oregon, raised in Eastern Washington, played basketball and learned a little Japanese language at the University of San Francisco, volunteered as a youth minister in Adderbury, England, farmed on Lopez Island (where I met my husband from Nebraska), farmed some more in central Ohio for Dominican Sisters, graduated from OSU's college of food, ag and environmental sciences and moved to Michigan. I bake sourdough bread and pizza, like to run into neighbors outside on a regular basis, only knit if the weather is cold, and love the feel of my heart beat and the burn of my lungs after paddle boarding in a lake or working outside, especially after turning the compost pile. My husband is a researcher and instructor at a state university, and we often dream about sailing with friends. Maybe I'll start making Christmas presents early this year, but probably not.
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