Letter: An ode to leaves and the season upon us

An Island expat doesn’t fall far from the tree

My Dancing Leaves

Autumn leaves, tumbling, tumbling down.

Dancing pirouettes across my new lawn;

Leaping on the roof tops, across cars and street;

A ballet in the garden, a twirling round my feet.

Up and down sidewalks you swirl and you hop,

Somersaulting and leaping, dancing till you drop.

You skip along fences, the deck and the walk;

I can hear your rustling whisper, your laughter, your talk.

All summer you waltzed to the breeze through your tree,

Now you’re skipping everywhere, for now you are free.

You’ve learned how to twist, to jive to and fro;

How to spin, leap and twirl in a fine “do-si-do.”

You just love your freedom, and you want us to know,

How high you can leap, how far you can go.

You’ve shed your old coat of green upon green,

You’re dressed for a party and you want to be seen.

Whether your gown is red, orange, or brown;

You’ve dressed for the ball, and go spinning off to town.

Too soon autumn leaves—too soon you have fallen,

While high in the sky the wild geese are calling.

You make a great carpet of green, yellow, and red,

Or you lie there so pretty like a giant bedspread.

The wind rushes by, and you leap up with glee, 

To form a great square dance around every tree.

Alas, the autumn leaves, they now cover up the ground,

So, I pick up my rake and go strolling all around.

Those wet leaves just lie there, not making any sound.

Should I just leave you there till spring comes around?

Maybe by then you’ll have all blown away.

Blown across the street, blown there to stay.

Will you twirl from my yard? Skip off my lawn?

Will you be any less? Will you soon all be gone? 

Will you jitter-bug to the neighbours? Skip down the lane?

Or will you just frolic there? Then dance home again?

Hugging my fence corners? Hiding in my bushes?

Rushing everywhere, where ‘ere the cold wind pushes?

Bringing back your family, your friends one and all?

Oh! I guess it’s just better to rake you up this fall! 

Betty Bowerman

Espanola, formerly of Manitoulin