It wasn’t all that long ago when raking leaves was a family fun tradition. The kids would gladly help rake as long as they could partake in a few jumps. Of course this was long before we worried about what was lurking in those leaf piles like ticks and other airborne allergens.
Nowadays the kids have all aged-out of raking and jumping in the leaves, so I’m left to raking the backyard all by myself. I even attempted to entice our exchange student to experience the American fall tradition of leaf raking but that suggestion was quickly undermined my the kids.
I began my project with the typical zest and zeal I do with most backyard activities I decided to compile a 2016 leaf raking music compilation. Of course, this took quite some time to develop but having a good soundtrack helps me get the job done.
As I stood in the backyard surrounded by the leaves at my feet I felt defeated. I recognize that leaves produce food for trees and other plants, and leaves provide a visual delight earlier in the fall, but at the end of the season, they are a nuisance. Allowing the leaves that fall to the ground and remain there for the winter all brown and dead didn’t seem to be an option.
After raking a while longer I remembered that Robert Frost had written a poem about leaves so I took a break and made a cup of tea and found the poem, “Gathering Leaves”.
Spades take up leaves
No better than spoons,
And bags full of leaves
Are light as balloons……
But the mountains I raise
Elude my embrace,
Flowing over my arms
And into my face.
Next to nothing for use.
But a crop is a crop,
And who’s to say where
The harvest shall stop?
Off to the hardware store I drove as I decided I would join the legion of backyard leaf blowers.