A Burial At Sea (Round Two)

Once, ruminating at the beach,
A leaf, crisp and golden,
Fell onto the white sands,
Laden with promises broken

By the autumn, and shrivelled
In fear. I reached out to it,
But was too late. It quivered
And died in my arms. I was hit

By a sense of childlike guilt,
Not unlike when I used to step
On ants, first with glee,
Then with viscous remorse, as yet

Unexplained, but coded in
My very being. But I grew
Out of pacifism - insectile,
At least. And yet here I knew

That this 'death' was natural,
But it felt wrong. It felt wrong,
Useless in death, but for decorating
Our tar-choked floors. 'Nature is strong,"

I told myself. But as its skin
Flaked and revealed its true
Frailty, I wept for this little leaf,
This bled-out child of virtue.

Knowing that the salt would
Soothe its exhausted veins,
I gave it a sea burial, and waited for
That cycle to begin again.

The End

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