Thursday, November 22, 2012

love a forest, kiss a leaf

This afternoon I walked with my family along a leaf-soaked pathway in the forest.  On the way back I fell behind on purpose because, as any mother can probably tell you, a reprieve from the children is necessary even if it's only for a minute.

All became still.

Except... to my left was one leaf at the end of a thin twig waving violently, as if calling for help.  Why was this one so desperate for my attention?  I plucked it gently and noticed a brown trail, perhaps from some insect or caterpillar, winding through its damp material, over and across the veins and off its zigzag edge.

When I brushed it against my lips, the cruel voices rolled and thrashed—voices that were really just myself.

You're kissing a leaf?!
You nerd.
Stop daydreaming.
Do it this way.
Hurry up.
Quit smiling to yourself.
 
But as a bird sang I closed my eyes to shut them out.  It was a very important leaf.

  

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