Why are dead leaves so lovely?
Why is the sky so blue?
Why does the starlight reach into our night
And whisper that hope is true?
Our world is infused with blessing
That my logic cannot explain
And it whispers “rejoice” in a still, small, voice
Beyond the clamor of pain.
So I’ll dance as the leaves are dying,
I’ll look up at the bright blue sky
I’ll let starlight into my heart’s dark night
And trust that hope does not lie.
For love makes the dead leaves lovely
And soon buds will burst forth new
Love colors the sky and makes the stars cry,
“In the night, hope still is true.”
Flames unfurling in the cold
Paint the landscape red and gold.
Drained of green, yet vibrant still,
Waiting for the winter’s chill.
The wind picks up; they tumble down
And in falling gild the ground.
Thus they whisper without breath,
“Beauty blossoms out of death”
Years spent in New England and the Upper Midwest have taught me to love autumn. The leaves are so beautiful, and yet they only change color because they’re in the process of dying. Here are two poems I wrote this year meditating on this paradox. Looking at the poems, I see the beaten-down paths depression has left on my soul, but in my better moments I know that this death, too, is giving way to beauty.