Every year since I can remember we’ve gone to jump in the autumn leaves to celebrate my dad’s birthday. Even when he’s across the world, every October 28th I find at least a small pile of leaves to jump in in his honor. I think it’s one of the great family traditions that binds us all. All nine of us, all over the world are looking at leaves, jumping and thinking about our dad. This year was maybe one of my best jumping years yet. The weather really couldn’t have been better. I think it was 73 degrees or something. Still crisp air but warm and lovely. The leaves were dense and full of autumn essence. Every breath you took in made you feel autumn through your whole body. It was delicious. We went to the cemetery by our house where the gardeners had blown leaves into a humungous (about 50 yards long and 5 yards wide) pile. We played and jumped and buried each other. We all rested in wonderfully cushioned beds of leaves. We each built our own little house of leaves and went visiting each others houses. I spent a good 3 minutes just laying in a soft bed of leaves, looking up at the blue sky, watching the clouds whisk by with the autumn wind and breathing in the smell of dried leaves. It was heaven. I hope I don’t ever forget that day. I love the pure delight of nature. Kids can feel it in their bones. There is nothing that can substitute that kind of Joy. I’m pretty sure my dad taught me to seek out and soak in that kind of Joy. Thank you Dad.I think maybe I’ve posted this before, but this is the poem we’re working to memorize this fall.
by Elsie N. Brady
How silently they tumble down
And come to rest upon the ground
To lay a carpet, rich and rare,
Beneath the trees without a care,
Content to sleep, their work well done,
Colors gleaming in the sun.
At other times, they wildly fly
Until they nearly reach the sky.
Twisting, turning through the air
Till all the trees stand stark and bare.
Exhausted, drop to earth below
To wait, like children, for the snow.