Autumn is past and the year’s darkest night is behind us. The trees are bare, a reminder of the separation of life that comes with the season and with life’s seasons. The waves of mourning touch us all, but some more acutely. Just as the leaves are separated from the trees, our hearts are rent by the gusts of living. And yet, in the ash-gray desolation there is a moment when we are separated at last from separation itself. The void creates a space for new friendship, not a replacement, but a fresh breath of wind in which the leaves of joy take flight.