When autumn winds strip bare the trees,
And red and gold leaves fall,
We rake them up into a pile
As high as I am tall.
Dad tells me then, “Son, jump right in!”
I run, I launch, I dive,
Crunching down into the pile,
Just glad to be alive.
I come up grinning ear to ear.
“It’s your turn, Dad,” I giggle.
“I’m way too old”—he shakes his head—
“My bones are much too brittle.”
But then he says, “Oh well, why not?”
And plops into the pile.
I laugh and jump on top of him—
We wrestle for a while.
Watching from the living room,
Mom shakes her head and smiles.
Dad pulls me up; again we rake
The leaves into a pile.
I know pile jumping’s silly—
Not much of a game at all—
But jumping piles is what I love
When red and gold leaves fall.

[illustration] Illustrated by Doug Roy