They whisper as they draw themselves in, a faint susurration of retraction. Listen closely: the crackle and sloosh of xylem and phloem, the low hum of nutrients on their gravitational migration, leaving scarlet and orange and yellow in their wake.

Listen closely: the roots curling and flexing, snuggling themselves into configurations of comfort in the hardening soil. The mycorrhizoids are singing their little mycorrhizoid songs. Listen.

Lie still, breathe, listen. The near-imperceptable footfall of a passing slime mould. Small ciliate scurryings. Nitrogenous symbiotic pulses.

Frost etches its inimitable filigrees. Still. Listen.

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