literature

The Last Leaf

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knittingknots's avatar
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Literature Text

The Last Leaf


He watched an autumn leaf,
the last on the branch,
twitch in a wind
heavy with the promise of winter.
His eyes stung,
- from the wind, no doubt -
as he remembered
how she had walked through these woods,
her voice soft with spring's promise.

Now he brushed the silver hair out of his eyes,
- blast his eyes, watering like that -
and looked at the trees,
lifting bare hands to the heavens,
and wondered
if his spring would ever come again,
or if he,
like that last leaf, finally dropping,
would be caught in the wind
to blow away alone.

Sitting there, in the tree,
he watched the leaves
and gray sky,
and a trickle overflowed his stinging eye
to dry coldly against his cheek.
I was reading a piece of poetry by Kakinomoto no Hitomaru; the line in Rexroth's translation "In the Autumn mountains/ the colored leaves are falling" stuck in my head. The original poem is a lament for lost love, and thus it carried me on.

Plus, I've been in love with O. Henry's story "The Last Leaf," in it's own way a story about loss and love, since I was a kid...and thus, the two thing produced the one poem.
© 2009 - 2021 knittingknots
Comments19
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knittingknots's avatar
LadyofGaerdon's avatar
Dragon-Clawshade's avatar
This is absolutely beautiful, I love it.

--

The wish that never came true...
knittingknots's avatar
Thanks much! I appreciate the comment!
Dragon-Clawshade's avatar
You're welcome :D You're someone who can actually write something meaningful, I like that :meow:

--

Touhou, unidentified fantastic object
jonskiigator's avatar
Stunning piece, a thoroughly fantastic read...
knittingknots's avatar
Xerolien's avatar
knittingknots's avatar
Thanks! I appreciate that!
tmulcahy's avatar
"...wondered if his spring would ever come again, or if he, like that last leaf, finally dropping, would be caught in the wind to blow away alone."

I used to wonder that too. Then I blew away alone. I's OK.
knittingknots's avatar
That is how it goes a lot of the time....been on both sides of that particular fence....
somnomollior's avatar
Sunny-Dip's avatar
Very lovely poem, but I'm kind of confused. With the silver hair hint, I know it's Inuyasha (maybe...I think...not sure XD) and with the way he's all sad and thinking about (still guessing) Kagome, has she died? That's just what I got from it. Still, beautiful poem! :heart:
knittingknots's avatar
I couldn't make up my mind if it were InuYasha or this other man I'm writing about (original material. The other man has silver hair, too, mostly because he's older. His wife has recently died...and he goes to an apple grove where they first declared their love, and spend time together over the years to remember her by.

Indecisive muse. So minimal clues. I'm not sure which corpus it's going to officially wind up in.
Moushiyou's avatar
Lovely introspective. Sutle, beautifully moving prose as always.
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