I set out to go and kneel
at a bedside where death advances
and the kingdom of God draws near,
and the pavements I walked on
were thick with fallen leaves,
red, yellow, tan,
the resplendent glory of the dying.
All along the street the wind
was making leaves to circle-dance
before me, so that I wanted to clap like a child,
and say, “Again! Again!”
It had no meaning except joy.
When leaves are green
and bursting out in silent song,
the wind gives them an audible voice
with which to sing.
When leaves die,
the same wind lifts them up
Living and dying, alike,
the breath of God draws out
our song, our circle-dance,
makes every passing moment holy.
We rest, and rise, in peace and glory.
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