© 2008
Timothy R. Jarvis

The beginning

This is the story of a different time and place, and as all the stories I remember loving so much it begins like this. -

Once upon a time in a land far away lived a tree. He was an old, tall tree who stood by the side of a small stream which came from the mountain in the east.
There are many tales I could tell about the tree, the life he had seen go by on the stream, the birds who nested in his branches, and the animals, children and lovers who sat and played at his feet, but the story I like the most isn’t actually about the tree, it’s about one of his leaves. Anyway, it goes like this; I’ll start from the beginning again.-
Once upon a time in a land far away lived a leaf. He lived with all his brothers and sisters at the top of the tree, enjoying the day’s fresh sunshine and the stars at night. He grew strong, green and healthy, always stretching out towards the sun he loved so much
One day a cool breeze swept down from the mountain. All the leaves began to change colour, their summer greens turning to autumn browns. One by one they fell from the tree.
The little leaf twisted and twirled and turned through the air.
- ‘What is happening?’ he thought, ‘where am I going?’ -
All of a sudden he felt the crystal- cold water of the mountain stream, and floated gently away.

The cold took a while to get used to, but the sun slowly warmed him up, and as his first day on the stream came to an end, it seemed to the little leaf that the water was warmer as well.
Soon after the sun had gone down in front of him, the little leaf curled himself up, closed his eyes, and feeling a little bit surer and safer, went to sleep.

Birds chirping in the now almost bare trees awoke him from his dreams and slumbers
In the night, the stream had carried him into a wide lake where the waters were hardly moving. The mountain was far away, out of sight, and even that early in the morning it was a lot warmer than it had been the day before.
Caught in a gentle ebb, the little leaf floated to the side of the lake where the water lapped over smooth grey rocks. He found that if he caught a ripple just at the right moment, it would wash him up onto the rocks, and he would actually be out of the water for a few seconds, before being washed-over again and carried back into the lake.
- ‘This,’ he said to himself, ‘is how the rocks live; one moment in the warm sun, the next in the cool, clear water...
How beautiful it is to be a rock! ’

If you would like a copy of the whole book you can send 5€ ($8, 50kr) and I'll post you one.