The Color of Experience


Autumn color is everywhere! Fall is my favorite season. This year it has birthed a new understanding of myself. The color of the leaves, bright yellow, russet, gold and red, will eventually fall from the trees and fade away. Not only is it autumn, but I am in my autumn years. And I still have much to offer my family, my friends and the world. Some might decide they no longer want to participate in life, and I know a few. I choose to keep doing, thinking, living. Life is a magical experiment - an opportunity to live fully, gracefully, gleefully! Sure, I get tired,and I have unrequited goals. But, I CHOOSE to keep doing, being. How else will I achieve those goals?

"Do or do not, there is no try." Yoda

Have you ever seen the tracing of leaves left on a sidewalk? That sight has always intrigued me. It is a leaf, yet the leaf is not there. So what is it?

Chemically, it is the tannin from the leaf staining the cement. How can we translate that to the human condition? We all grow older and die. What have we left behind? It doesn't need to be some great philanthropic institute - the philanthropy of sharing ourselves is just as great. We need not be famous - we may only be revered by one person. We could be a rock star or paint stars on rocks. As a songwriter, I try to describe emotions that we all feel. Some people can't put words to their emotion, either for themselves or others. That is the power of song, poetry, dance, expression. One simple statement can reverberate through history.

"I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale

Is today the day you turn over a new leaf? How about validating an old one? Each of us has a story to tell. Each of us has a gift to share. Each of us brings something to the table. We are each a leaf on the tree of life. Whoever is tenaciously clinging to this tree has experience beyond measure and we, both of us, would be well to ask them about it. There is no substitute for experience. We can, and should, learn from our elders. They may have grown up in a different time, but the basic principles of life are the same. Let them leave some of themselves behind with you. I wish now I had asked my parents more about their lives.

What color is your leaf? What imprint do you want to leaf behind?

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