Autumn Early Evening

The wind whips the neighbor’s leaves into our yard

As ours are swept into our neighbor’s

And I wonder why anyone would bother raking them

While they still fall

The trees letting go a few more of them each day

As if growing accustomed to surrender

At first just one or two every minute or so

And then suddenly dozens at a time

The wind pulling them off their branches

To flutter and flurry about

Giving the invisible wind a form

As if he were wearing a cloak

The grass covered with a brown carpet of discarded leaves

Crunching when you walk

A cool breeze hints at colder days to come

The furry red dog gambols about

Running after a stick

And then resting in the grass

She looks adoringly at her human

As he encourages her to run and play

His warm smile making me glad I came home before dark

Early enough to enjoy the beginnings of twilight

And the sound of the wind’s leaf cloak

Dancing and twirling in this early autumn evening

The lone marigold that survived these past months

And a tiny sprig of something green that is growing

Not cognizant of the season

And I wonder again at the leaves

How it is their imperfections

That make them beautiful

Unique

How they were beautiful when they were green

And are beautiful still

Even the ones that are crumbling and brown or beginning to decay

Autumn’s textiles a crisp texture

I release a breath I didn’t realize I was holding

A kind of surrender

And breathe in the sweet scent of decaying leaves and fresh air

Resting in the peace of home

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