Autumn's homecoming

September 29, 2013 

Each year when autumn appears on the highway of the seasons, it is welcomed like a homeward-bound member of the family. Autumn brings a melancholy sort of joy for its luggage contains the very best of days, but also the fading of another year. Never complete, like the restless fish of the sea, the days are forever moving on toward a new and distant goal.

The winds that escort these last days of September bring change as they open the gates to nature’s pastures full of dreams. Colorful days that reveal nature’s ever-changing palette of color, a season when the days are cloaked in golden leaves. The shortening light silently stokes its inner fires, revealing the brilliance of autumn’s scarlet oak or swamp maple that blaze in fields and along roadsides.

It’s also a time during which shifting weather ushers in times of turbulence, and passing showers bring a refreshing new clarity to the heavens. The heavenly sky rider’s winds whoop it up as they move the fattened summer herds toward their wintering grounds.

There is an unvarnished truth to the folk tale stating that all the brilliance and intensity of summer’s sun cannot, for a moment, rival the bright blue skies that come with autumn. Nor is there anything static about the colors that are part and parcel of October.

Year after year, predictable as sunrise, the soft greens of spring merge with summer’s intensity, with its darker firmer tone of chlorophyll. Then, as the sun’s magic mission is completed, the hillsides and valleys take on a golden hue, comparable to a field of ripening pumpkins, the singular fireglow of a bitter berry, the purple of grape or the scarlet intensity of poison sumac berries in a melody of colors that, starting in the highlands, follows its own spectrum of brilliance.

What soul is so dead as not to rejoice with autumn’s homecoming?

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