Hey Bud, do you think you could open up? It’s getting tight and crammed in here.
Ahhh. That’s better, thanks.
Oh! That warm glow on my skin, makes me want to stretch out and grow.
Yum. What’s that sweet taste? I like it here. Whenever I feel that warm glow, this verdant pulse radiates through me. What a feeling. Pure joy. I could do this all day. And so I just hang out in the warmth for a long time.
Now, who’s there. You’re shaking me, tickling! Say what, you want me to dance? Okay, everyone is dancing now, even the limbs are swaying. All this dancing is making me thirsty.
Splat, Plop, Splat, Plop, Splat, Splat, Splat, Splat.
Ahh, how refreshing. This feels Better. Splat, plop, splat.
That tasted great, but I am little cold. Where’s that warm glow I like so much? It doesn’t seem to come around and stay as long as it used to. Things are changing.
I feel a little brittle, chilly, and my skin feels tight. Come to think of it, I haven’t felt the same for a while and where is my handsome green going? I feel a little dull. Things inside and out are changing, and some of my friends have completely changed already. Mom says that how autumn is. It happens to everyone.
There are the Reds, they seem really bossy lately. The Yellows, they are always friendly. The Purples and Oranges, they seem to be in a hurry and don’t stick around to hang out. Most of my friends are brown and they seem to be a little bitter and jealous of Reds and Yellows. I think they are beautiful the way they are. I can’t wait.
They all told me my time will come, and sometimes it doesn’t come until the first the bite. First bite! What is that? Mom told me not to fear it, unless you’re a Ginko. “You’ll hang in already, don’t fret.”
Ouch! They were right, that bite was hard but the warm glow, she’s back. And here comes the dance, the tickle, and the splat, all together. Dancing now is fun because together with my sisters and brothers we make this grand crackling sound. My Dad, Ash, he says the next time I dance might be my last because my time to fly is coming soon. But first, my color. I guess I’m lucky because my Mom says we Fraxinus family have all the colors, and depending on the next bite, I could fly in red, yellow or purple.
Waiting is hard. Ha, my first patch of orange. Dad says tomorrow orange and purple will start to appear. I can’t wait!
The squirrels are really annoying me. They are running up and down Mom and Dad all day. But they said the next dance will be the biggest. They said the know because the birds fly over and tell them.
Swish, pfff, whoosh. It’s a huge dance, no one can sit still.
It’s really hard hanging on now. It’s pushing me back and forth, spinning me. Mom looks at me and says, “It’s okay, just let go.” And so, with a last breath, I release my stem from Mom’s limbs and I fly.
Acer, my neighbor, warned me not to land on the lawn if I can help it. He said there’s a big claw that will come get me if I land there, stuff me in a bag, or worse, burn me in a pile with my friends! Dad says if I am lucky, I’ll find a nice bed of dirt and help it turn to soil.
I am aim for the spot between a fence and a pond. Dad says, you never know with the dance, it might pick me up and send me to a new place. He said, if I am really lucky, I might get to fly more than once and sleep under a white blanket. That sounds fun. I can’t wait. Mom and Dad says, it doesn’t matter where I end up on my first flight, because wherever we land, in time we always return home.