The new week starts out grey and blustery. Perhaps that's why I went in search of photos today that capture Autumn with her heart on her sleeves, er, I mean leaves.
As we work away at this post, we are especially drawn to these photos for their deeply satisfying colours. They're so brilliant you just want to bite them. And, perhaps I'm especially enamoured with leafy pictures, for around here some trees are quite bare already and although many still hold tight to their leafy gems, their days are numbered, and therefore to be treasured.
Which is why, if I was anywhere near it, I would want to sit on that bench awhile and just sit. Breathe in the smell that's unique to Autumn ... earthy, spicy, smoky, even a little leaf moldy. I'd be tempted to want to either take pictures or especially write while I sit there, but then I'd be missing so much with my eye buried behind a lens or my nose inside a journal page, wouldn't I? So perhaps, for today at least, I'd leave them both at home and actually be present to the world around me.
You know what else I'd want to do sitting on that delightful bench in that deliriously delicious spot on God's good earth? I'd pick out a leaf or two and twirl the stems between my thumb and finger and watch them spin around like tops. Twirling, twirling, such a sight, Twirling, twirling, pure delight!
And, I'd bend close and examine their pretty patterns and shapes and textures. Touch them softly with my fingertips to feel their leathery or brittle surfaces. I'd also want to find a pile of leaves all dried and curled up, and kick them high in the air and then just watch them float back to the earth.
I'd sure want to try Susan Branch's
idea ... "Catch a leaf in midair, make a wish, kiss it & toss it into the wind."
What would I wish for as I tossed it into the wind? Maybe that I would remember these moments and on those bleak midwinter evenings, when life feels a bit dull, I'd do like Mr. Wordsworth once described about his daffodils.....
"For oft when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the
daffodils leafy frills."
(apologies to Mr. W for dallying with his perfect poem)
For, on those days when life feels empty or lonely or overwhelming, by envisioning something that has given us great contentment and joy in the past, we can indeed recreate those feelings and, noting from personal experience, our whole being can be enlivened. As if we were actually there again. Methinks that is the gift of memory -- good memories, that is -- the ability that lets us relive those times of joy so we may, once again, be lifted up and fortified in weak or disheartening moments.
Of course, the downside of memory is that we can also keep referring to memories of bad experiences which is to our detriment and the whittling away of our well being. So, I'm filling up on the good stuff, so I have lots to fall back on in those trying times we all experience. Today I'm feasting on these gifts from Autumn's hand and in this case, I think it's okay to be greedy about filling our memories with lovely things.
There it is ... who knew all those words would tumble out just from thinking about a little collection of leafy photos cobbled into a mosaic. I'm grateful. And I hope these tumbled-out words will bring something of a smile and the urge for you to go out and kick up a few leaves before it's too late.
Sending you hugs of the bear-size kind,
This week I'm happily linking to
Please Note: I created the above mosaic using picmonkey.com, but the individual photos are not my own. These beauties were found at Unsplash.com and are available for free and can be used in whatever way a person wishes. In truth, even though I take a lot of photos, photography is not my first love; I'd sooner write and let someone else take the
pictures. So I'm grateful for people who give us this gift so freely.