The Fall, by Arah Ko

The Fall, by Arah Ko

I saved the leaves, plucked them from the sidewalk,

salvation from the rubber soles of children’s shoes.


Mama said they were beautiful, all webbed and veined,

crimson, as if blood pumped through them still


but yesterday I found them shriveled, paper thin and

winter dry, brown, crackling around the edges.


I cried, cradled them in the nest of my fingers,

laid them before the altar of my mother’s feet.


“Oh darling,” she said, plucking me from the floor,

rocking me in a chair as old as I was, “Nothing lives forever.”


Copyright © 2016 by Arah Ko

The leaf image is public domain.

Arah Ko
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2 responses to “The Fall, by Arah Ko”

  1. Brianna Nelson says:

    Did you write “The Water-Dweller’s Daughter” that was published in Teen Ink? I can’t imagine there are many Arah Ko’s so I’m hoping this is you. If so, I’m hoping you see this and get in touch with me. I am in love with the work and would really like to talk to you about it.
    Thank you!!

    • Arah Ko says:

      Hi Brianna,

      Thanks for your interest in this work! I did write “Water-Dweller’s Daughter” for Teen Ink, I’m presently surprised you found it. Feel free to email me at, I’d be happy to talk about writing and/or editing.

      Arah Ko

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