by Benjamin Allen Root, Sr.


I walked among the hickories of November. Their leaves fluttered across my vision as broken and cascading pieces of yellow and gold. The ground beneath them, newly covered, crackled when I moved upon it. The air was cool, and had a dusty touch. I witnessed the days growing short as misty vapors rode in upon the dawn. In the evenings, twilight shadows, like sundial reminders, stealthily walked across the porch of my office.

Homeward bound, I saw in the sunset splashing colors of pictures not yet painted, images of hayrides and harvests, and there I’m sure that I caught glimpses of gentle faces and pleasant places.

Night enfolded and blended this mixture into soft tones of gray, wherein played elusive phantoms of those thoughts which yet tried to cling to the torments of the day. Slowly came reverie. Soft visions set themselves free to float across my ever-dimming consciousness, disappear beyond the mind, and then return with tinkling changes put upon them by a mind far greater—one which already knew the mysterious wholeness of autumn’s falling leaves like the swept fragments of a broken glass.

I gathered my phantoms in, like new-found fruit, sensing again the feeling of being included, available to any who wish to share the harvest mystery now unfolding. Explanations falter and understanding comes from another source, one which decorates itself with cascading colors of yellow and gold, veils its dawn with gentle mist, and grips its air with a dusty touch.

Benjamin Allen Root, Sr. 1927 – 2005