Impossible, but it happened: a leaf
Came to rest, plump and green and fresh as breath,
After conducting the breeze in that brief
Musical catastrophe called “leaf-death”.
As through a camera falling from a cliff,
We saw what it saw and felt what it felt,
Delightful panic, a delicious whiff
Of chlorophyll, and in the air we smelled
Smoke, the corpses of other leaves consumed
In climactic fire; we suffered an inkling
Of ennui in miniclimax, so resumed
The playback later, when flares of twinkling
Finger fire unloosed it in an instant
Quick as burning hair. How strange to unclick
Our apparatus, notice a distant
Leaf-cousin just lying there, poke a stick
Into its papery carcass, hollow
As if the creature inside had gone dead.
There was a time every eye could follow
Aerial spirits, which turned and twisted
In fire glow; then they never existed.