Deep blue sky that stretches out to the Moon.

The sweet fragrance of Osmanthus that had been filling the air has now been exchanged with the clear smell of autumn.

From time to time, the winter wind shakes the tree branches and rustle the dry leaves.

Feeling the warmth of the sun on my cheeks, I hold the bamboo broom in my hand as I stand in the garden,
and from the corner of my eye, see a brown leaf fall from a tree.
As I look up, another leaf falls, and another, as they sway off the branches.

I light a match and set fire to the fallen leaves I have collected in a corner.
The fire flips the leaves around as they burn, and white smoke rises into the air from between the layers of leaves.
Right beside, I see an ant dragging on a leg of a hay colored grass hopper.

I hear a cricket singing from the foot of the Alalea bush.
I try to look for it, but once I am close by, it stops singing like the air around it has frozen in time.

I feel like there is a fine thread of tension between myself and the cricket, both of us looking out for each other.
Suddenly, another cricket starts to sing, as if to cut off that tension.

One by one, voices unite, and becomes a chorus that fills up the garden.
Their voices permeate through my body, quivering my eardrums.

Glancing back, I found the fire was already gone and there was a mound of white ash on the ground.

Stipa tenuissima ‘Pony Tails’Hydrangea macrophylla, Gillenia trifoliata, Stachys officinalis ‘Hummelo’

Photo | Noboru Murata