In search of story

October 26.22: Coping, but barely


There was a time

when I would climb,

jump and hang and crawl,

confetti’d leaves

in shoes and sleeves,

telltales of autumn brawl.

With summer old

but not quite cold,

the air a heady brew

of acorn dust

and toadstool must,

the world was strangely new.

The leafless trees,

my youthful knees

together rocked the day;

in nature’s gym

my scuffed-shoe vim

had eternity to play.

I’d like to now,

but, holy cow,

I just can’t make me do it;

if I should try

I fear that I

would very shortly rue it.


With more thanks to photographer S.W. Berg

 and Fort Harrison State Park.

I think I can say without fear of (much) contradiction that I am not the only one in this blogging room who would love to kick leaves all the way up to that big old dead branch, climb on it, jump up and down, hang from it, walk it like a tightrope. Nor am I the only one who would decline the temptation. There isn’t enough liniment in the world.



19 thoughts on “October 26.22: Coping, but barely

  1. HAHAHA! I would love to join you Maureen, but the squatter that lives in me, Arthritis, wouldn’t allow it, not to mention all my other ailments. You and I could sit together on a bench and watch the younger folks frolic in the leaves.

    But your poem sure brings back lots of happy memories of autumns gone by, when my body actually moved fluidly and painlessly. I had really long hair as a young girl, and picking out leaves and twigs was an art form. 🤗

    Age takes away a lot of our adventures, but hopefully it will leave our memories in tact. Wait! What? I forgot what I just wrote! 😵‍💫

  2. Ditto, ditto! That old joke about how my train of thought got derailed isn’t so funny any more! And, yes, we would just sit and watch and remember. I wonder how many youngsters can put their phones down long enough to get leaves in their hair. I can well believe that picking leaves out of long hair is an art form! As I recall, leaves also settled in pockets. And sometimes, if there were a particularly energetic leaf fight, they’d settle behind our molars.

  3. I’m with you, but I fear it would not end well. Not sure how I would get out of the woods.

  4. Voltaren does not come in a big enough tube. The heart is willing but the body not so much. 🙂 When you mentioned shoes, it immediately made me think of polishing saddle shoes and trying not to get the white polish on the black. 🙂 Because of age also, when I see people throwing leaves or rolling in them all I can think of is ticks. Being older sure takes some of the fun out of life. 🙂

    • Oh, you are so right! The years do teach us to be more careful and more skeptical and that can certainly take the fun out of jumping in a leaf pile. Needless to say, I remember the skill required to polish saddle shoes. A lot of my “play shoes” were retired “Sunday shoes,” and had straps and buckles. The straps and buckles were REALLY good at snagging leaves! That was long before the saddle shoes, though. Indeed the body cannot do what the heart wants to do, but we can think about it!

  5. In truth, though I would back you to do almost anything you set your mind to, climbing trees might be a leap too far, even a really tempting mushroom-covered one. I had to pick a fallen beech leaf out of my hair only yesterday. I had been half-trying to catch leaves as they fell, and later discovered that the tree had evidently been having a joke with me.

    • I like that! Yes, I can see that beech having a high old time zinging leaves down on you! I too fear that climbing a tree, or even part of a tree, might be a leap too far, but it’s still a temptation. I will console myself by imagining climbing a tree, but then I’ll have to imagine myself getting down, and then I’ll have to imagine a parachute. This could get complicated.

      • In the more recent of my tree climbing days they were getting easier to get up than to get down. And it’s the getting down that worries me.

  6. Indeed. Some getting-downs are more abrupt than others.

  7. A fun poem that reminds me of my tree climbing days… long gone, that’s for sure. But I can still manage a walk in a forest and kicking fallen leafs is still one of my favorite things to do on those Autumn walks.

  8. I need my brain to remember all those birthdays past over these many, many years and tell my body to sit and watch the falling leaves as they change and not tempt me to come out and play. Great poetic reminder of days long past.

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