One week until I get to go back home and visit with my family. One week until the Randalls are all back together. One week until we can be together again. One week until we can sit together and laugh around the table. One week.
I have too much to do this week. Assignments, papers, readings, rehearsals, work, appointments, interviews, discussions, and somewhere… sleep. And a relationship. More than one, actually. Constant relationships revolving in and out in a continuous stream of people that talk and play and ask and argue and question and tease and require and pull me into places I really don’t understand sometimes.
Where is it coming, where is it going and how will it be happening anyway?
So. What matters?
The leaves have nearly all turned. I was walking and I saw one this morning that was split down the middle, one side bright red, the other bright yellow. It was beautiful. Such a contrast. On just one leaf. It is getting colder, and then we have days of warmth, and then days like today, where really, all that should be required of us is to curl up in a warm chair with a cup of hot chocolate and a good book. Barth excluded.
That leaf. The contrast. Red and yellow, on the same leaf. How did it happen? How do the colors of leaves and their changes relate anyway? What makes this leaf red and this leaf yellow and this leaf both?
Is it shadows? Is it the nutrients? Is it the ways that the water travelled? Was one half of the leaf on one side of some great magnetic force, and the other half the polar opposite? How did the leaf get along with itself, caught between the colors and the changes and rains? Did it change its mind halfway though? Was one side waiting longer to turn and so waited too long for its chance to be the same color as the rest of the leaves around it? What made it this way?
But why do I care? Why has a leaf glanced at on a walk to work as the sky was waiting to release its downpour eight minutes after I arrived still stuck in my mind five hours later?
It was beautiful. And it caught my eye. Are the two connected? Perhaps. It was different. And I have seen many leaves now, many of which have changed colors and fallen and become dry and so skitter across the ground in barely audible susurrations as the wind blows them as it wills.
They crunch. I have fun stomping through them, a satisfying consonant after another as they fall beneath each other. But those are the ones that have dried, and lost their color. And then they will all blow away to the undergrowth. They will hide. And I won’t see them ever again. Until they become dirt for their trees.