Today I shall tell you the story of one bright shining magical yellow leaf.
Before that tale births, may I share other stories of waves, sand, trees, autumn colors, and who knows what else?
Last weekend we drove east and north through the woods, past the two-classroom school where I work, down gravel roads, past brilliant autumn colors, into the magic of a cloistered road. Our car wound toward the Mouth of the Huron, a remote beach perhaps 25 miles from our house.
We’ve been getting out of our patch of woods to enjoy the nip of fall lately.
“We should do this every weekend,” I say. We nod. We’ve said this before.
The Mouth of the Huron, just over the border in Marquette County, holds so many memories. We camped out here with our kids, surrounded by other young moms and dads with their tribes, one weekend each summer. The beach held campfires, volleyball nets, tents, sometimes a pig roasting on a generator-fired spit.
My friend, Catherine, and I often vow to walk the sandy beach at least once a summer. Have we yet walked this season? The answer is, sadly, no.
However, happily, Barry and I finally paused with our cameras along the shore on a windy but rather mild Saturday.
We traveled out here because a friend mentioned that the beach was half gone!
One must investigate.
Sure enough, the rising waters of Lake Superior–and perhaps the storm of a few weeks back–had swallowed much of the exposed beach.
It’s amazing how nature is always shifting. One minute the beach stretches for ten feet. The next year the waves lick exposed roots. Life shifts always. Change is the only true constant, ever-moving. Sometimes to our delight. Other times to our chagrin or disappointment.
An elderly friend lies dying in a nursing home in Wisconsin. Her heart weakens daily and now only pumps at 20% of its capacity. I remember her in her 60’s, cutting down huge poplars, taming her forest, just down the road from us.
She enjoyed life to its utmost. An unassuming woman, an ordinary simple woman, who modeled a remarkable ability to be present in her life with all its shifts and erosion and changes.
Her daughter and I cried on the phone yesterday afternoon.
Her daughter suggested I call again to talk with her mom after 4:30 p.m. (Which means after 5:30 Eastern time.)
I called. What might one expect when speaking to a woman so close to death’s door?
“How are you doing?” she asked.
“How are YOU doing?” I responded.
“Oh, I’m doing just fine, dear,” said my friend. “Just fine. It is so good of you to call.”
The amazing thing is this–I believe she IS doing just fine.
Her body may be failing, but her spirit isn’t.
She sounded exactly like that 60-year-old who used to pour me deep mugs of coffee and serve the children Oreos to dunk in tall glasses of milk. We laughed together.
My friend is one bright shining leaf.
Yes, she is one bright shining shimmering leaf.
Now I shall tell you an amazing story of another bright shining yellow leaf.
Barry and I sat on the couch on Sunday afternoon.
Wind blew in gusts outside the window.
A haze of gorgeous yellow leaves fluttered in the breeze, falling, falling, to the earth below.
Suddenly we both spotted one particular yellow leaf. The sun lit it against the forest backdrop. Illuminated by bright light, it took center stage.
We continued to watch the leaf when suddenly it began to turn in complete circles. We noticed its stem no longer attached to the tree. What held the leaf? What allowed it to turn in magical circles without any obvious attachment to the branch? Did the branch catch a tiny hole in the leaf?
It swirled. It glittered. It danced.
We both delighted.
We were both enchanted.
I scurried to get the camera. Would it capture even the tiniest bit of the magic? You might not be allowed to glimpse its dance without a video, but perhaps you can imagine it twirling round and round and round, suspended in time, one bright shining moment that was known as Camelot…
The leaf fell to the earth, joining its fallen brethren.
Don’t miss any of the magic, dear friends. There’s a show every ordinary moment, if we keep our dials tuned to it, isn’t there?
Please share any ordinary magic from your world. Blessings!