do they drop
stiff, like a branch
with a soft thud
muffled by fallen leaves?
or do they soar
higher than ever
in a final valiant push
to reach the sun
till at last,
victims of gravity,
they fall
into oceans, swept
onto distant shores
by the callused feet
of fishermen

the reference to the callused feet of fishermen was borrowed from one of the short stories in Italo Calvino’s Difficult Loves titled A Ship Loaded with Crabs that I had been reading today. The phrase stayed with me.