In the deep fall
don't you imagine the leaves think how
comfortable it will be to touch
the earth instead of the
nothingness of air and the endless
freshets of wind?
~ Mary Oliver, excerpt from Song for Autumn
in New and Selected Poems, Volume Two

I know that Christmas season is here in full swing, but I need to reflect one more minute on leaves.  You know, the billowy pile of Maple, Oak, and Sweet Gum leaves at your curb or in your neighborhood.  Yes, the ones you walk by or run through or kick or leap into shamelessly.  Wait, you don't?  It's not snow, but oh I have a weakness for leaves.  The smell, the crunch, the colors, the appeal.  And piles of leaves are one of the best sources of entertainment that should have been included as item #6 in this article.
Alex and I spent many a day in Pennsylvania in the past month tending to family.  One warm sunny Saturday, we took a break by going on a nature stroll.

I expected that we would return with pockets billowing of leaves and gum balls, rocks, twigs, and berries.  But how I love to watch plans change into unexpected adventures.

Speaking of love, I love this view. This tug. 

And prancing down a quiet street full of a fading sun.
Our adventure took a shift when we found a small pile of leaves that gathered by itself at a curve. Then Alex gave me the Cheshire grin and came straight at me with an armful of giggling ammo. 

And in that exact moment of Cat & Mouse, we decided to create our own pile of leaves.  And what I discovered while I raked leaves?  We didn't need to wander far to have hours of fun.

Exhibit A: Rock. Rocks are fun.  Seriously, a seat, a jungle gym, a launching pad.

Exhibit B: Glorious leaves.

Understand the community where my in-laws live pays to have the leaves gathered and removed, so making a pile is absurd.  (Our absurdity had nothing to do with disposal people. Get over it.)


And in that moment of rolling, jumping, burying, and chasing, time stopped.

She reminds me that I need to be idle and blessed, especially during this Christmas season.  

And I am.