here’s to clinging

atree12s

Some things you only hear or see once a year. Some things you only hear or see once ever. Some things you don’t start hearing or seeing until you listen and open your eyes.

You know that sound you hear when the wind is rustling the leaves in a tree? The swishy, slow but constant sound? Well I found out yesterday that it sounds different when the leaves aren’t fat and green and graciously slap against each other.

It was cold. And windy, which made the cold feel even bone-chillingly colder. But I stopped, steps from entering my car outside the library to look at the up at the tree that stood in the little strip of land between the parking lot and the street. The tree held branches full of dried brown leaves, still clinging. The constant wind was making an altogether unfamiliar but entirely enchanting music from the branches with their leaves. Each leaf could be heard fanning the one next to it. Instead of the light swishing of healthy leaves, there was a slight sharpness to the sound. Like thousands of hands clapping in a far off place.

I didn’t move for a minute, which for me, in the bitter cold (especially sans coat) never happens. What should I do about this new sound? I could tell others with my limited power of verbalization, “Omk! I totally heard these leaves today…they were so freakin’ rad. Ugh! I can’t explain it, I wish you’d been there!”. I could record the sound on my phone and replay it for my kids. “Listen to this guys!”

“What is it Mom?” (as they listen intently–silently–and I dream on…)

“It’s the sound of a tree full of leaves in the wind.”

“Okayyyyy….” (that’s the 13 year-old)

“No seriously, it sounds different than a tree with green leaves. See, all the leaves are dying but almost all of them have hung on to the tree. And they continue to hang on, even in the wind, and they sound like hands clapping!”

“I’ll clap for you Mom.”

“Nevermind…”

But I still had to share. So I share here.

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2 Responses to “here’s to clinging”

  1. jmartinlibrarian Says:

    Beautiful imagery. I enjoyed this little bit of peace in my day.

  2. Jen Says:

    Thanks Jenny!

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