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The dictionary definition of a leaf goes thus: “A flattened structure of a higher plant, typically green and blade-like, that is attached to a stem directly or via a stalk. Leaves are the main organs of photosynthesis and transpiration.”

That’s such a tame definition as far as I am concerned. Leaves to me are magical, especially when decorated with raindrops. Then there are the ones that cling to rocks which are even more so. There are the small leaves on tall trees in the endless forest stretching towards the mountains. Others go on a romp on roofs and can be seen hanging down trying to get back to Mother Earth and when they do that they look like a green lace curtain.

Some leaves stand proud and single, yet others grow in clusters seeking comfort and joy in the company of their kind. Others grow wild on the banks of rivers and lagoons, either spreading like carpet or on slender plants trying bravely to stand upright. There are patterned ones that grow in designer gardens created by humans. Decorative lights adorn some leaves, others border boundary walls minus all the fuss of lights.

The sizes, shapes, colors, patterns, all are so varied and utterly fascinating. The thin long leaf of the coconut tree with a rib in the centre is so different from the flat broad leaf of the banana tree. Whether standing aloof and single or in closely packed groups, whether growing on tall trees or hanging down from roofs, whether growing on trees in the wild or on plants in pots tended by humans, leaves are always a delight. Wherever I go I never fail to capture them.

©Shail Mohan 2022