Thursday, November 10, 2011

Autumn Upon Us

The cusp of a leaf danced in mid-air outside my window. Curious, I watched it float away only to return. It must be bound to a strand of spider web I reasoned, but where did the ends lead. It had to be attached to something. As if an alien craft, it went out and left, slid right and back. I held my breath as it stopped and hung motionless. Impossible. A stray breeze caught and broke whatever tenuous control the tiny curl possessed and whirled it away, dancing, tumbling, magical.

Musing, I went about my morning, organizing items from my flood damaged home, cleaning, boxing, tossing out damaged goods. I found a dusty picture only to stay my hand from the discard pile. I shook off the dusty coating and discovered my parents smiling back at me. Save. Definitely save.

On the way to the laundry I stepped outside onto the side porch. A yellow leaf drifted past, bright against a rare blue sky. In moments I was caught in the exhilaration of a leaf storm. Fall - upon us. Is it named fall because gravity pulls life back into itself, prepares for wintry blankets, garnering strength for the coming spring and the promise of new life rising. I stood in awe in the midst of maelstrom; my hair flew about my face in the chill breeze.

A trip East last winter caught me in a blizzard of epic proportions and I learned a new word for snowstorm – thunder snow and recently snowicane. Lovely. How we humans love to name things. Perhaps Adam’s divine injunction is encoded in our very genetic fabric. What would I call the falling leaves? Leaf frolic. Zephyr waltz. Tatters adrift. Perhaps… Fall cascade of color?

It was a silent phenomenon, as regular as the seasons. Breathtaking. This dance performed each year since the dawn of time. The miracle was in the observation, a moment to observe the earth spinning on its axis, circling the sun, the galaxy flowing through time. A single woman standing on a porch observing a shower of fall color fly past, paving the way for an unknown future.

What would you call it?

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