Fallen Leaves (A Fragment)
When you sit by your desk by a high window,
Higher than all the treetops,
The swivel chair does not bring in a framed landscape.
The square sky does not offer an objet d’art;
It is polluted, dull and opaque,
And clouds in it are drifting to nowhere.
You turn away from it, and the drifting finds its own end.
If you were younger, they would become
Celestial horses galloping across the rainbow,
Their hooves smelling of wild flowers.
By now, the trees down there must have been
Deprived off leaves, as they become colder and colder,
From red to brown and black.
Who would let their windows open to frigidity,
Only to learn how few leaves are still in the wind?
Not you, as you have grown acrophobic since mid-autumn.
The fallen leaves are safer, like a boy who chooses
To lie on the ground so he will never fall from his bed.
Dec. 06, 2007
Note: A colleague jumped to death from the tenth floor in his apartment house at one o'clock pm on Dec. 5th. He is 50, a professor in People's University of China in Beijing, specializing in modern Western aesthetics and philosophy covering the theories from Nietzsche to Heidegger and beyond. Among his last words, he wrote: "At midday, a Nietschean time, he drops from the high sky, like a fallen leaf or a flying bird?"