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Dead Leaves

Day Two of Chloe Rose Violet's Writing Prompts for October

By Hannah MoorePublished 2 months ago 3 min read
Top Story - October 2023
26

It is not autumn itself that's the problem. No, I love autumn, with its energising climate after the alternating fug and disappointment of the English summer, its warm colours glowing in lowering sun, its iconography of harvest bounty and shenanigans in the borderlands between this world and the next. Potion brewing and tree hugging and pulling in to the nest, I have to say, it suits me well. Except. When I go to see the dentist, the smell of the waiting room makes me want to run. The airport feels only marginally less stifling than the plane, and the anticipation of a dreaded meeting is as unsettling as the meeting itself.

I loathe winter. Winter is dark, it is bleak, and it is riddled with viruses. If I praise Jesus for nothing else, I am thankful for Christmas, but I would take Yule or Hanukkah or Diwali, or any other reason to light candles or fairy lights, I'm not fussy, I need those twinkles! For this reason, my autumnal pleasures are tinged, always, with the dread of what is to come.

In recent years, I have tried different strategies to manage this. The most successful was giving birth to two children during autumn, a feat my sisters in law also obliged me by completing. In this way, I have ensured that from October until Christmas, I am too damn busy organising parties and presents and seasonal joys to ruminate very much. But a close second has been just getting out into it. In autumn, I seek dead leaves like a dog pursues approval. I cant get enough. Will travel for right vista. Sadly, my family don't share my leaf-love, and they hold me back, they really do, and many is the year I must content myself with my local woodland.

This is the tale of one such year.

I don't know what I was thinking. A collage was old hat, a photograph too incorporeal. My craving overpowered my reason, perhaps, but I decided, in homage to dead leaves, to make a dress. Now, I'm no designer, but my dress needed no pattern. Nor am I a seamstress, but my dress did not have seams. No, this dress was an immersion in death and decay and the glory of fallen leaves, and this dress was bonded with glue.

There were steps to take. Park trips and woods trips, swerving pull-overs in the car when I spied a roadside specimen. There were leaves drying in newspapers and marinating in tubs of glycerine dotted about the house. There were borrowed mannequin limbs stacked in the hallway, and rods of glue spilling onto the floor. Frankly, it would have been quicker to drive to a decent landscape (I know a few, I could do a tour!), and bask in the glory in situ, but I was flush with an idea. And so, I present to you below, my opus. Thank you, for your applause.

I donned this gown only once - it was delicate, and the children said it looked better on Myfanwy, as we dubbed the mannequin. Myfanwy stood in our hallway like a seasonal totem for over a month as the leaves, even after their embalming, dulled and grew brittle. At Halloween she complimented her glad rags with a witches had and toad familiar, but as Christmas neared, my daughter confessed that her glaring presence at the foot of the stairs was giving her nightmares, and Myfanwy was disassembled and returned to her home, the dress discarded, as dead leaves are fated to be. That felt kind of right, in the end.

*

For Chloe's October prompts, please see below....

Humanity
26

About the Creator

Hannah Moore

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Comments (20)

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  • ThatWriterWoman2 months ago

    I need twinkles too Hannah! I love this story - thank you so much for sharing it with us! Myfanwy is a great model for your stunning gown!!!

  • Naveed2 months ago

    Congratulations on your Top Story, well deserved 🍁🍂🍁

  • J. S. Wade2 months ago

    Magnificent writing and spellbinding story. Myfanwy might cause a fright night when half awake. Love the colorful photos. Hope to see you at the Falling Leaves Ball on All Hallows Eve. Step into the woods at dusk and follow the red eyed Jack-o-lanterns. 🍁🍂🍁 Congratulations 🥇

  • Adela Justice2 months ago

    I read your blog post and your blog post is very useful for others . If you need more ideas to write more blog post so, must visit my site .https://www.mymeetbook.com/adelajustice

  • Novel Allen2 months ago

    I totally second the Dhar clones to Novel clones on this story. What an imagination of magnificent proportions this one is. This has totally reignited my imagination which has been sadly lacking of late. Thank you and congrats.

  • Dana Stewart2 months ago

    Beautifully written and I love that dress!

  • Omggggg! You are so freaking talented! Please imagine thousands of Dharrsheena clones giving you a standing ovation! That dress is soooooo beautiful! Congratulations on your Top Story!

  • Carol Townend2 months ago

    This is very impressive Hanna, and I love what you have done with those leaves!

  • Donna Fox (HKB)2 months ago

    Hannah, this was fun and whimsical! I love this other creative side of you, thank you for sharing it with us!! Congratulations on Top Story!

  • Caroline Jane2 months ago

    Fantastically written! I love this insights into your world. And. That. Dress. Wow... so clever!! A glorious story. Congratulations!.

  • Gerald Holmes2 months ago

    So happy this made Top Story! Very deserving!!

  • Celia in Underland2 months ago

    So glad to see this here! I read it this morning but was working! Brilliant idea and love the creativity! 🤍🤍🤍

  • JBaz2 months ago

    Oh my, you work your words like magic, I was drawn into the colors and smells of autumn and the feel. Awesome

  • I couldn't help thinking, "Another Bacardi and Coke, Myfanwy..." :-D Very good piece :-D

  • Gerald Holmes2 months ago

    OMG! You have a way with words that is just breath-taking. The flow and feel of this is magical and that dress is, like this story, a work of art!

  • Donna Renee2 months ago

    I am applauding so loudly!! ❤️❤️❤️

  • Rachel Deeming2 months ago

    This was just so good on so many levels. First, Myfanwy. Not since Little Britain has that name been given such status. Secondly, what a completely off the wall idea. I wish, I wish, that that dress had lasted. For some reason, your endeavour to make a dress out of Autumn leaves has filled me with unmitigated joy. Not laughter, but a reminder of the zest for life that can only be found in the quirky and eccentric. Wonderful, Hannah. Just wonderful.

  • Oh my ! I love this dress!!!!!!! So so creative xx

  • Alex H Mittelman 2 months ago

    Great work! Fantastic!

  • This was a nice Read 👍Great Story💯📝❤️🍂

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