" When summer gathers up her robes of glory,
And, like a dream glides away. "
SARAH HELEN WHITMAN
Autumn was always my favourite season. But in more recent years, I felt less adamant about it, for I found myself truly anticipating and appreciating each season, yes, including winter. With that, I sort of assumed they were each my favourites, by turn. But yesterday, I realized, as an unbidden joy sprung up from within, Autumn was....and still remains my most favourite season of the year. I could feel my senses alert to the moment, for I adore that contrast of crisp, cool air against the sun's warm rays. And, that's exactly how the day felt in late afternoon.
As I drove round the traffic circle, heading down the winding street towards home, happiness welled up as I caught sight of the slanting light hitting the tops of the trees. There was a marked ambiance, heavy with a sense of relief, as if the earth, brilliant and bold and bountiful all spring and summer, could at last let go of her boundless energy, and relax—much like the relief a woman feels after holding in her midriff wearing a fitted dress all afternoon. Oh, the joy of letting go.
The glories in the garden begin to fade, and I feel the peacefulness of that evanescent charm. And as much as I am smitten with the riotous beauty of autumn's raving russets and luminous gold-leaf, still to come in our area, I think what I really have come to appreciate is that sense of being able to come back to oneself, to center one's soul. The old Victoria magazines, in its September issues, used to focus on finding the quiet center of one's life, and writing from that to the world....to use words Sarah Orne Jewett once penned.
I found these various lines below attributed to American author Gladys Taber. She seems to have captured the feeling of summer's fading charm much better than I have. Let me share:
September wind blows away the fatigue of summer heat, and the listlessness of August weather. It blows away, indeed, the piled up years. It makes the heart young. Going back to school, football games, dancing, falling in love, corn roasts, moonlight rides - so many such things belong to September. . . .I have always felt that something fine is about to happen. And the fact that winter is on the way is not troubling this early in autumn. Time enough to think of that in October and November, but now it is too soon. First comes the harvest, the last ripening, the splash of zinnia color in the garden, the perfect late golden rose. Yes, a good time to be young, and to relive young days. . . .
"Notice the beauty.
See what lovely things there are for you to do
in your corner of the world."
I snipped the last of the sweet peas from the vine a couple of mornings ago. A handful of seeds tucked into the ground early in spring now towered overhead. The vines outgrew their trellises which seemed tall enough in May. So much joy they've provided over the summer months. Jars on the kitchen counter, fistfuls handed to neighbours and friends who stopped by.
And, on this particular morning, I had a feather thought to give a bouquet to the mail lady who had just pulled up at the cluster of mailboxes across the street. Nearly brushing the thought aside, I hurried inside to find a jar and add water. I crossed the street—carefully, covidly—holding out the bunch of perfumed petals, "Would you like some sweet peas?" With an instant smile and reaching out with an open hand came the exclamation, "I love sweet peas. Oh, I can smell them. Are you sure?" Oh yes!
And so the days unfold in pleasant gentleness and quietude.... on my street, in my home, in my heart.
Wishing you a beautiful weekend.
Be well. Be safe.
Wonderful act of kindness! Love sweet peas! Remember them from my childhood home! Grandmother had great luck with them! Beautiful blog post! Love your writing!ReplyDelete
A most fortuitous encounter for you and your mail deliverer, I bet it made her day and perhaps her week too! So much fun:) Your autumn garden hardly hints at the season, it is still so beautiful and lush. Thanks for sharing your lovely photos.ReplyDelete
Each season has so much beauty. I have two favorite, spring and fall, but in truth,I do enjoy them all.ReplyDelete
An abundance of garden! It's all so beautiful even when its lushness is fading in color... I always hate to have to clean up the fall garden.ReplyDelete
What a totally lovely gift for the mail lady. So gracious and generous of you! And, yes, I agree with you. autumn is my most favorite of all the seasons. I really enjoy them all, but autumn/fall is easily my #1.ReplyDelete
Brenda, whenever I read your post, I feel calm and centered. What a beautiful thought to share the simple gift of sweet peas!ReplyDelete
What a wonderful writer you are! You are able to write exactly how I feel. Such an incredible gift. Every month, I pull out my old Victoria magazines and Gladys Taber books. I just read that Gladys Taber quote just the other day! I love your spontaneous gift of Sweet Peas to your mail lady. Kindness is what we all need in these times of Covid. Love this post!ReplyDelete
Bren, I have so enjoyed your garden this summer. How, I love the old and new Victoria magazines and I was just reading one of Gladys Tabor's books yesterday. I love to read about her spaniels. And, remember I am quite jealous about those sweet peas of yours. Oh, how I wish I were your mail lady and I can smell them here. I am certain she was more than grateful for them.ReplyDelete
Have a beautiful day, my friend. Enjoy these lovely days!
I enjoyed this post. Autumn is my husband's favorite season. He is always so excited to plan a color hike. He mentioned it to me during our lunch today. He has a new place to explore for us. Our colors will peek next week and into the next.
I enjoyed your giving the bouquet to your mail lady. And sweet peas will make her car smell wonderful.
Wonderful post. Autumn is my favorite season.ReplyDelete
This post is as a jar of sweet peas... Many thanks. I hope you had a wonderful weekend.ReplyDelete
It is almost like you were writing my own thoughts about the seasons in your first paragraph. The choice of gratitude for all seasons because each has its own unique gifts . . . but then the realization that, yes, autumn is indeed the one in which I feel most alive! (I am still grateful for each one!) Fall is such a glorious time! I am lingering over coffee this morning, relishing the fresher, cooler air as I catch up on blog reading. Our Father gives such wonderful gifts to His children!ReplyDelete
What a beautifully written post, Brenda! I wish I could feel about Autumn the way you do. We don't have much of an Autumn here. The colours of Autumn brought on by the changing leaves seldom last long here. All of our seasons are somewhat like that. Spring is cold and winter-like until almost June and then the heat of summer comes, if we're lucky, sometime in July. Then it almost skips Autumn and goes right into the cold of winter. I remember as a child, the seasons didn't bother me at all. I enjoyed each one as it came. When my children were growing up, I still felt that way. But now that I'm older, I enjoy the warm weather best because it is easier on my body. I am able to enjoy a snippet of each season however and I'm glad we do have all four, for however long. I simply enjoy the summertime best. Love your photos and your quotes. I agree with your friend above, whenever I read your post, I feel calm and almost like I'm receiving a hug. Happy Autumn! Hugs to you...Sandi.ReplyDelete
What a lovely post! I also love autumn most of all. I feel an affinity with nature this time of year, at my age. Past spring, and even past summer, and well into the time of life when (as you said) I can let the bodice ties loose. We don't care if the world sees us with our wrinkles and sagginess. We are tired and ready to rest.ReplyDelete
Lucky mail lady! What an act of kindness, Brenda, to make someone's day with such a sweet gesture. Well done you.ReplyDelete
How thoughtful of you to give the sweet peas to the mail lady. I'm sure you made her day! My sweet peas are straggling on the ground and there are just white ones still blooming. How lovely they smell. I enjoyed reading your description of autumn and smiled at the "letting go" image. Happy Autumn days to you!ReplyDelete
I so relate to your feeling of the seasons. each one a favorite but fall, oh fall you outshine them all<3 reading your posts today is true after-lunch luxury. such tantalizing imagery!ReplyDelete