Updated: Nov 10, 2019
- Oh, if I were you, I’d travel so much! If I were you, I’d be so light that the wind could lift me without any trouble! I’d be shifting and mysterious, firstly with glowing complexion, green and fresh, then colored gold, like the sunset that visits us every day- said the crestfallen evergreen leaf. Oh, why am I not like you? Why isn’t anybody happy to see me in spring, or nostalgic to pick me in fall? Had I been a pine leaf, despite being evergreen, at least I’d have a hope that maybe someday, at a very cold Christmas, somebody would look for me, would come especially to pick me, would probably choose me among thousands and flatter my vanity as they inhale my perfume and decorate their front doors with my beauty.
The recipient of these words, the oak leaf, would never have described herself as lucky. Up to now, thinking about her imminent death has prevented her from acknowledging a true blessing. This blessing was the opportunity to fulfill a dream: the journey. Either long or short, the journey was a utopian, unreachable dream for many of her sister leaves. Regardless, there was one more step before starting the journey, maybe the hardest, harder than the wind, that sometimes beats her without any mercy, harder than the sun, that burns her furiously in August, even harder than the boredom she was feeling while contemplating the same landscape for months, the same universe: The Great Detachment!
She was reflecting on this recent discovery whereas the evergreen leaf carried on her moaning:
- People say: You’re so lucky, you’ll live forever!
What for? I haven't seen a human soul since I was born. I live hung by the tree, from where I watch the seasons passing; I hold the snow in winter and the sunbeams in summer, and all of them mark me deeply. They are transient: they come and go, and I stay here longing for their return. How I wish I were an oak leaf!
The oak leaf was listening full of sympathy, but her concentration was slipping towards other thoughts: I spent my youth wishing to be an evergreen leaf! Who would have thought that living forever can bring so much sorrow?
When the shaking started, the oak leaf thought it was the result of deep sadness, that would eventually end up in tears. However, the tremor became more and more intense. A cold wind was rocking her with violence. The big moment has finally come. The great detachment! She was looking forward to setting off. On the other hand, it was so difficult to detach! It wasn’t just up to her, of course. Circumstances had to be ideal: growing older, being prepared and having a breeze to push her forward, to other lands, stories and characters. Despite her burning wish, a strong, physical feeling was still keeping her stuck.
After taking another look at her sisters, that soon would detach to travel in other directions, the oak leaf closed her eyes. She wasn’t able to look at her friend, the evergreen one. Guilt hinder the goodbye moment. Suddenly, a blast of cool air hit her thin body. She felt she was being transported in a flight with no control, very far from her house.
While she was spinning around, she opened her eyes with precaution. Scared, she tried to fight against that violent separation: I want to be an evergreen leaf, but it was impossible to come back. Then, she saw, at what seemed a very long distance, the tree that had been her house next to her friend's house, the yew tree. They were the only inhabitants of a small hill.
- Goodbye, a whisper feed from her lips, being covered by the wind.
- Goodbye, said the evergreen leaf, and a tear dressed her body entirely.
Ana Maria Gheba