Rake and Jump

This original has been sold. Prints available on Fine Art America.


How do you convince a child to willingly do a chore? It’s easy if the chore involves raking leaves.

What child could resist organizing brightly colored fall leaves into a huge pile and then gleefully jumping into their creation? My parents used this trick to coerce us into hours of raking activity, but it was worth it.

My friends and I traveled from house to house, rakes in tow, just for the privilege of creating a home-made trampoline constructed solely from yard waste. Although most neighbors offered us a dollar or two for our trouble, the pure joy of hopping into the soft pile of leaves was payment enough.

To make things even better, once it got too dark to rake and jump; we would burn the leaves and roast marshmallows over the open flames. Hot chocolate and s’mores for all.

Now I am an adult and raking the lawn has become a chore. No marshmallows (burning restrictions due to high fire danger), just blisters.

Maybe I should try jumping into that pile just once more – Nah, I’d probably end up in the ER (how do you explain that injury to your boss?)


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