The rake swept across my grass, pulling brown leaves off the lawn and into little piles. I moved about the yard, adding leaves and combining small leaf piles into larger ones. I made a few large piles, smelling the musty scent of decay, enjoying the cool breezes of a fall day, and stopping so often to enjoy the colors. The sky was a brilliant fall blue, the grass green, and the air fresh.
Leaf raking is much easier without small children helping. I walk around the house to find a container, and when I return the leaf pile is still intact. The work is done quickly. But, I remember when my children were small, the fun they would have jumping in the leaf piles, burying each other and jumping out. Sometimes I would stop work and enjoy watching them, sometimes I would join them, but sometimes I would sigh, chase them away or put them to work, focused on the task.
I look at my lawn. Freshly raked, but still there are stray leaves scattered about. I go around raking up the missed leaves, but for every leaf I catch, three more fall or are not caught by the rake. I feel frustrated, but then I stop. I look over the entire yard. I can either see the scattering of leaves on a yard, or a yard freshly raked, with a few leaves. The choice of focus is mine.
I relax, put away the rake, pour a glass of lemonade and sit on the porch. I think I’ll call my grown children today and say hello.