Oct. 19, 1944
The wind rattles at the window panes and the branches of the trees sway from side to side. The leaves are twirled in the wild merry-go-round of the wind until they sink to rest on the earth. A fresh gust brings more leaves and these mingle with the others in a whirling dance of death.
Along the edge of the road, the leaves find peace and many snuggle up close together. That is what you have been hoping for, for now you can walk through the leaves and listen to their whisperings. What if your shoes are new? It isn’t as if you were bouncing a pebble along. The leaves can’t hurt your shoes so on the way home from school you walk through the leaves.
Slowly you start to kick up leaves into the air so that you can hear their swansong once again. Their curious song telling of their loves and adventures. Listen!
“When we woke the gentle south wind caressed us and the warm spring rain kissed and soothed us. In summer we watched the rain clean the dusty grass and then the grass withered and died under the sun’s heat. And only a few nights ago when the air was already cool and tangy we found ourselves all glittering with shiny, silver crystals. This must be our last dress for the ball, we thought. The old one, who was even withered when we came, said we would one day get new ones. But no, for when the sun came he cruelly robbed us of our jewels. Then one day we looked at each other and lo, we were clothed in the finest of raiment. Gold and crimson and purple. Surely these were our ball dresses. And then the dance started. Our partner was the wind, the gay dashing wind, and one by one he led us on a wild dance until we were glad to rest. But our biggest adventures …”
Their whisperings stop. You have reached the end of the leaves. Slowly you continue down the road, your shoes dusty from the leaves, and think of what you have heard, and you wonder.