Freitag, 15. März 2019

The cycle of Life

Winter: a time when something old comes to an end and something new is waiting to awaken. This is the story of a Leaf that does not want to detach itself from the old Life and learns what happens when it surrenders to the pulsation of Life. It is a true story. It is the title of the text collection 'La feuille qui ne voulait pas tomber de l'arbre' from Kerstin Chavent. Danke für die Übersetzung meines Textes!

Autumn was here. The cool morning fog rose later and later to make way for a pale Sun. The smell of smoke lay in the air and filled it with a hunch of long evenings at the fire and lonely seclusion. Slowly the foliage of the Trees took on the colours of the embers: flaming red, bright yellow, warm orange. 

The majestic Lime Tree with the heart-shaped crown next to the church let go of the leaves they had inhabited during the warm season and sent them on journeys. One by one they sailed down into the unknown. 

All, but not one. Every time the wind blew, it clung to its Branch with growing desperation. It trembled, it shuddered, and it never tired of repeating itself: Hopefully it will hold! Hopefully I won't fall! It couldn't think of anything else! It could not see how the birds gathered for the great journey to the south. It did not feel the gentle breeze of the last warming Days and the comforting caress of the Sun's rays. It did not hear the humming of the late insects dancing around the Sun. 

During the rainy Days, when the Leaves became heavy and shiny, it trembled anxiously at its thread of Life, which it felt became thinner and thinner. It feared the Days of the wind that dried it and made it even more vulnerable. At the slightest breeze it felt panic-stricken and watched its last neighbours gradually disappear, revealing a skeleton-like branchwork. 

The Lime Tree stood more and more bare. Nothing more could be seen of the heart-shaped crown than a few stiff branches that rose like curved fingers into the emptiness of the sky. What a misfortune! What a tragedy! A whole generation fell into emptiness. 

The Leaf, which did not want to fall from the Tree, remained alone and thrown back on itself, pale, dried up and snatched from all that it had once filled with Life. It remembered the almost endless and carefree Days and the sweet and starry Nights. Life was adventure, dance, discovery! Each Day brought something new: Encounters, scents, songs. Around it Life hummed and seemed boundless. 

With pain it thought of its fresh and exuberant youth. Water and Life flowed in his veins and gave him full and seductive forms. Happily it fluttered beside its neighbours in the dizzying height of its Tree, breathing the sensual scent of Summer and singing with them the exuberant song of freedom and joy. 

In the beginning it didn't even notice that the Days became shorter and the Nights longer. Carefree it let itself be caressed further by the Sunbeams and swayed by the wind. But the gentle breezes turned into storms and it felt something in it begin to give way. When it saw its neighbours begin to separate from the branches, it could not believe that things were about to change. Life had been so great! 

But his regret, sorrow and all his memories did not stop him from feeling that the end was coming. The end? In reality it did not know what to expect. It knew nothing but its Branch and its neighbours, the flight of the insects and the singing of the birds, the breeze of the wind and the radiance of the stars and planets. Was there anything else? Was there a Life outside the treetop, beyond the emptiness around it? It felt increasingly weak, lonely, abandoned, without hope. 

Finally it gave way. One morning the wind broke the delicate ribbon it was still holding at its branch. It began its gliding into the depths, strangely surprised by the lightness it felt. No more fighting, no more stapling, no more pain, no more fear. Nothing remained. Nothing? It could no longer move. In his empty veins no more Life juice flowed. But something remained. 

It felt like being enveloped by a well-meaning breath. It gently carried it to the ground and deposited it there. Here the Leaf became aware that it was not alone. Around it it recognized her neighbours and many more. All together they were united and formed a dense and soft Leaf layer. It wasn't a living Leaf anymore, but it was still there. Together with all the others it covered the Plants of the soil and protected them from the cold of Winter. It was them all. 

It had left its Tree to become part of a new whole. Slowly, very slowly, it turned into compost, humus, soil. It became earth. It was nutritious soil, the cradle for millions of different creatures. It was Leaf and not Leaf, earth and not earth at the same time. It could be penetrated, divided and reassembled. Beyond the physical forms, it felt a gentle quake, a soft tremor, a consequence of small explosions. Something pulled it upwards. It penetrated the ground, attracted by an unknown light that seemed strangely familiar to it. And the moment it stepped out of its peaceful and dark security, it realized: the Sun! 

She cheered, stretched, spread, grew towards it. Her tribe grew stronger and stronger. Her branches strived for the sky and she felt millions of small, fresh green Leaves unfold on her. She felt their ecstasy, their dance, their cheerful whispering, and she enjoyed it. Opposite her, next to the church, she saw a majestic Lime Tree with a heart-shaped crown. She greeted her, captured by the miracle.