The Idea for One Leaf Stirring began when I watched as a single leaf on a full tree began to twist and turn without the help of a breeze, as told in the story.

           The beauty and wonder of this story lead me to investigate the meaning of leaves.  Some ancient philosophies and spiritual traditions believed that not even a leaf stirs without divine sanction; others felt that leaves signified truth, and a single leaf happiness; modern interpretations indicate that a leaf signifies a turning point; that things are about to change for the better.

           This experience and these meanings and metaphors fell in alignment with my life perspective, and I adopted them as my dictum.

One sunny-but-still-cool November day, I sat munching a crispy red apple taking in my surroundings.  A short distance away stood a huge tree with white bark and lots of leaves, all of which had dried up and were hanging down toward the Earth, their Autumn colors lost to a mottled, tawny brown.  It was absolutely quiet and still — no people, no traffic noise, nothing — and I sat silently soaking in the sun, gazing at nothing in particular.  

             It wasn’t hard, then, to take notice of movement in this big tree. A little flutter.  A wiggle.  A flap. I focused in on the tree and found, to my surprise, one leaf was stirring.  Oddly, there was no wind; nothing else was moving except this one remarkable leaf.  There wasn’t even a scrap of litter skittering about the cement driveway.   The leaf casually twisted and floated on an invisible tide, and I became convinced the leaf was waving at me.  Though I admit this was somewhat of a whimsical notion, it was enough to deserve my undivided attention.  It seemed time stood still, for I sat and watched this leaf for time unknown.  

Suddenly, without any hint or expectation, the leaf stopped it’s fluttering and with the grace of a cliff diver, it jumped off of the branch and sailed out into the sky.  In elegant, lilting movements it rond-de-jombed down to Earth, swaying this way and that, a dance of such simplicity and beauty, one leaf stirring my heart.

Margie Jones
Sacramento, California

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