When leaves fall like confetti
at a parade, whenever a breeze
rustles the trees, and the pond
is covered with a brown blanket,

I come to capture the quiet with
only the sound of an occasional
bird and the distant hammering
of a carpenter hard at work.

I can actually hear the leaves
fall as I sit on a bench and listen,
a sound like crumpling paper at
a writer’s desk as he starts and

stops, dissatisfied by what he has
written, then picks up a new sheet
of paper to start once again, his
efforts halting and very difficult.

So, shall these trees start again
in the spring, produce a new
collection of leaves, just as an
author might begin a new story,

and by the end of next summer,
the leaves will once again reach
maturity and become brilliantly
colored as their story is completed.

Neal Donahue was born in Maine but grew up on Long Island. His college education in Oklahoma was subsidized by the Navy and he majored in English. After serving 5 years as a submarine officer, he taught elementary school in Massachusetts and Vermont, incorporating poetry into his curriculum. Neal has two children and six grandchildren.