To Become The Last Leaf

What is this feeling?

This wrenching propulsion

To become the last leaf,

Hanging onto the last gray branch

Of a winter tree, quivering in the dawn sunlight.


This hunger to feel my delicacy,

My vulnerable position,

Poised over the ground,

Clinging to my source with

A thread of fiber.


I dream of breathing in the light

Of a new morning and surrendering to icy breezes,

To let the winds of the day embrace me,

And take me with them,

Instead of cherishing the illusion

That I am in control, that I must defend myself.


I feel my threads,

The sinuous fears that glue me in place,


I hear the stories I tell myself

About falling into danger, wrecklessness,

If I let go.


Through the maelstrom of my worry,

Soft winds tell me a new story,

Of hope, possibility, newness, blessing,

And I am listening.


The sun rises warm and yellow,

And I feel and safe,

And seen,

And loved.


There is no where to fall to.


I let go, trusting my winds,

And float, aware of how I am gently

Swept upward,

Away from the ground,

From destruction,




and missed opportunities.


I rise.


I rise,

And I greet the sun

In Her new, vast, morning.


5 thoughts on “To Become The Last Leaf

  1. This is nicely done! I like beginning with a question. I like the image of the last leaf (I think the word “quivering” is too much and not needed). I love the questions this poem raises about source, control, fear of being purely God’s and loved as an expression of God, not as a mortal. Much of this poem reminds me of Shakespeare’s lines in As You Like It: Here suffer we not the penalty of Adam; the season’s difference, as the icy fang and churlish chiding of the winter’s wind, which, when it bites and blows upon my body, even til I shrink with cold, I smile and say this is no flattery, these are counselors that feelingly persuade me what I am. Sweet are the uses of adversity . . .” I find the line breaks in your poem provide lots of space to breath through the poem and be “swept upward” into the “new vast morning!”

    • Lovely! I will re-read the poem with more attention to “quivering” and will see what speaks to me, thank you. Great connection with the play! Well…played (ugh). Love you : )

  2. Having just seen the movie “I AM,” your line about the stories we tell ourselves resonates throughout human history. The movie suggests that the last 300 years of scientific thinking – evolution, social adaptation, survival of the fittest, genetic mutation, etc. – are the stories we’ve all been telling ourselves and it’s a lie! Then, as Pilate said, “What is true?”

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