one single leaf
is all
that she has left

its skin
a flaming red and gold
jubilant memory of

its voice
a fragile whisper
remaining trace
of a rustling dance
in the breeze

this single leaf
is resting
without weight
on the palm of her hand

she coops her hands
protects it from the wind

and she listens
she listens till
the whispering voice has
faded into silence

she opens her hands and
the gold has disappeared
the leaf has ceased to exist
and dust is all that’s left

as if presenting an offering
she raises her hands to her mouth
and blows

and gradually
the memory of
the jubilant summer
fills her heart