Saturday, November 7, 2009

Why Wait?

The crunchy golden maple leaves are thigh deep in my back yard. I like them best when they're on the ground, really, because you still get the acute, high-frequency colors of fall that they offer when they're on the trees, but you get to add the crisp sound and the wake-me-up smell when they're on the ground. They're the same color as my dogs, which makes for good entertainment, as well as a leg up for those guys when they want to stay outside because I can't find them and drag them inside. They lay in the leaves and hide from mama like a fully camouflaged sniper in the jungle.

This morning I stood on the deck, wrapped in fleece, waiting for my dogs to surrender their game. It was early still, golden, quiet, so I knew there'd be a giveaway rustle soon. A stray puff of breath rising like a geyser. A wag. I stood watching my own breath all foggy in the morning air and waited for them to come out come out wherever you are. Fall all around, I bathed in it for a bit. Up the maple tree in the back yard - the one that holds the tire swing - I saw it shimmering.

The last leaf on the tree.

Golden red, it was the one who won (or did he lose?) the contest of tenacity. He's holding fast. Afraid? Not wanting to give up what he knows?

For the love of god...go with your friends and family!

I remember how long I stood on the high dive at camp, knees rattling, knowing I had to jump to pass the life guarding test, but terrified into a kind of paralysis. Is that what's going on for you, leaf? Because if it is, I can tell you that the landing was downright exhilarating. To say nothing of the pride I felt for conquering my fears. Go ahead, dude...jump!

All alone makes me sad, even in the world of leaves. It's time to go, honey. Your friends are there to cushion your fall and throw you a party. Let go and join 'em.