Thursday, October 18, 2012

Things That Never Change When You Go


It was one of those days where the air feels so right, falling so lightly that you forget it's even there, that it's even necessary. The sky streaked over us, blue; sun filtering down through walnut leaves, warming everything with an extra shot of gold. 

I never notice walnut leaves until they turn. Each October, they surprise like it's the very first time.

Calvin raced his scooter down the hill, Ruby hung upside down from the monkey bars, Silas played in the dirt.

I kept an eye on them and an ear to the middle schoolers causing a ruckus over by the swings, hurling walnuts while they laughed. 

I walked in small circles, my eyes to the ground. When the gold was just right, I'd stoop and grab it up, a little family of the happiest yellow.

She moved in slowly. I let her pretend that she was being nonchalant. 

"What are you doing with those?"

"Picking some to take home."

"Why?"

"Because they're beautiful! Aren't they?"

"I don't know. What are you gonna do with them?"

"Put them in a vase."

"Why?"

"Because they make me happy."

Her eyebrows stitched together. She thought I was crazy, but she couldn't walk away.

She lingered, getting braver by the minute, asking a lot but offering just a little. 

The sun tilted, my kids argued. It was time to go. 

We said goodbye and walked across the street to our home, the one we've been waiting for, the one that I thought might change me forever with its crumbled sidewalks and cussing teenagers.

I used to wonder how I would survive the loss of my acreage, my rad barn, my picket fences, the vegetable garden, flower patches, my own forest of shade trees. My soul learned to breathe on that farm, every season waking me up to something new. 

I wasn't convinced there'd be enough pretty in the city.

I plunked my fistful of leaves into a bottle and hoped that the girl at the park saw something new. Maybe it was crazy, or maybe beauty really was all around. Maybe you could bend low for it and carry it with you home.

**

PS - This post? I loved every little thing about it. 
"we should use our strength to bloom in any season."