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Plink, plink—plink, plink, plink—pink-plink—plink—plink …

Following a November gusher, droplets from the gutter pool pin oak leaves within interconnecting light-circles, splayed upon earth-toned pavers. Variegated browns—cordovan, burnt umber, russet, tan, sepia, beaver—quicken our senses to this drama, its ordinariness melding into the extraordinary.

It’s about the circles, many enclosed within larger ones outlined in dark chocolate, ephemeral and translucent. Within our watery depths a corresponding shimmering occurs. It’s like glancing into a parallel universe and relishing its treasure. We feel whole despite the paradox of the leaves’ decomposition within such raw beauty.

Such glimpses of our Creator’s imprints afford a critical wetness in this time of killing drought.

We just have to pause and look for them. They are all around us.


Starlings swoop across oatmeal skies.

Ravens caw into the gloom.

Robins shelter beneath sodden pines.

Tree sparrows skitter for seeds among fawn rushes.

Doves preen on plank fences.

Chocolate limbs articulate canopies of crimson maple leaves.

Squirrels abandon their nests hunched in treetop lookouts.

Leaves from plum trees hang like withered rags from seal-brown branches.

Masses of bronzed pin oak leaves hang on for winter’s ride.

Mahogany veins sketch yellowing quince leaves.

Velvety nubs tip branches of magnolia trees.

Two-toned acorns pebble the streets.

New fallen maple leaves imprint moist sidewalks.

Clown-winds cavort piles of cedar droppings along curbs.

Mulched tree bottoms fan in circles upon tawny grasses.

Husks of crepe myrtle blossoms ache for new color.

Snake-like vines entangle Missouri honeysuckle bushes.

Rain-washes impregnate limestone creek bottoms.

Puddles striate mud paths, splotched with leaves.

Shades of November browns murmur like a distracted lover.

Patient listening bears rich fruit.


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