Hanging On

Falling ... more like flying, riding on the wind as I do somersaults in the air
Falling … more like flying, riding on the wind as I do somersaults in the air

Hanging On
by Jules Keenan

The crisp, morning October wind blows against my fragile body. I shiver from the breeze. I can already feel it happening, it will soon be my time, to join my brothers, down below.

The wind blows again, more powerful than before. I start to shake, not just from the wind, but from being weak, a wimp. I hate what the weather has made me become.

I can feel my roots starting to ache, the branch that I have called my home since the cool April day I blossomed starting to let go. The wind pries away at my stem, getting looser and looser, until I break away.

I’m falling, well, more like flying, riding on the wind as I do somersaults in the air. It’s amazing. To do what humans have only attempted to do, to fly without metals or machinery. Nothing but the air between you and the ground below.

The wind ceases, I start to fall, down, down, down, towards the yellowing grass. I hit the ground, and I am surrounded by my own kind, who have lost their luscious green colour also. I feel depressed, it is a big change from being way up high, and now being low, stuck on the ground like most things living.

I sigh, but before I continue my mental complaints, large bent prongs come out of nowhere and drag me and my fellows quite a distance away from where I landed. There is a huge pile of different coloured leaves, not like I’m racist or anything, but it makes me a bit nervous, considering the fact that my whole tree was turned a gorgeous red, it’s odd being mixed in with the faded greens, golds, and browns.

More and more groups come, some all of one colour, others mixed, I wonder why we are gathering so, but my question is answered a moment too soon. Two smaller humans come running over, I see the laughter on their slightly flushed faces before I hear it. When they are close enough to the pile that they can jump into it, they do, some of us are flattened, yet not destroyed, others, like me, are blown away a couple inches or so. Harder laughter is heard above the breeze, then the prongs come again, gathering us up as we were before.

The routine continues. They jump, we fly, they gather. They jump, we fly, they gather. To my surprise, it is actually kind of fun. At first, when I lost my home, I thought all I had to look forward to was the heavy snow to bury us as we decay back into the earth, but as the playing continues, I realize I am meant for more than that. I am meant for the laughter and fun of children, to play tag with the wind, and as I learn later, also for the help of Halloween decorations. As autumn is coming to an end, I realize, I didn’t have such a bad life after all.

Jules Keenan
Jules Keenan

Thirteen year old Jules Keenan has been writing since she was six. One of the youngest members of the Writers’ Federation of New Brunswick, Jules enters their writing contest every year and hopes one day she will win an award. The eighth grade student of Blackville Middle School lives in Barnettville, NB with her twin brother, Samuel; younger sister, Abby; proud parents, Jennifer and Jason; and fur baby, Max.