“I saw old autumn in the misty morn Stand shadowless like silence, listening To silence.”

The day is cloudy, damp and noisy. I can hear birds making a racket all over the neighborhood. I’m thinking crows.

Last night I turned on the air-conditioner in my bedroom. The rest of the house was cool enough, but my room was stuffy. This morning I was greeted by the sight of a dead mouse on the downstairs bathroom floor. One of the cats, Maddie I’m guessing, had a busy night.

Today the stars and planets lined up and ushered in the autumnal equinox, the first day of fall, at 5:05 this morning. I know when I was a kid the seasons changed at different times than they do now. Fall began the day we were forced out of bed at a prescribed time, made to eat cereal, dressed in our uniforms and sent off to school with lunches and school bags in hand. That was the end of the glorious days of summer when every day was ours to do with as we wished.

The beginning of winter is a bit hazy. I figure it was when my mother forced us to wear heavy winter coats, mittens and those hats we took off as soon as we were out of sight of the house. With winter came dark afternoons and mornings. I swear my mother used to put us to bed earlier in the winter telling us it was late. Look how dark it is. That ploy stopped working when we learned to tell time. I didn’t like winter afternoons. They meant going inside early when the streetlights turned on triggered by the winter darkness. We spend most of our week days inside, either at school or in the house. Winter was the confining season.

Spring began when we could shed our winter coats, saw buds starting to appear on the trees and afternoons lasted longer. It became official when my mother would start to let me ride my bike to school. I was never really all that impressed by the flowers poking their heads out of the ground or the leaves appearing on the trees. I was just happy to have afternoons when I could play outside before dinner. There was a sense of freedom missing in the winter.

Summer was easy. It was the day school ended.

Autumn is my favorite time of the year here on the cape. Red is the predominant color, all sorts of reds on the maples, in the bogs and on vibrant bushes along the roadside. Here and there are trees bursting with yellow, and I love them for their contrast. I call this my let’s take a ride season when the roads are clear and Gracie and I hit the trail. We sometimes take all rights and other times all lefts. Today I have errands, but then we’re celebrating the new season by taking a ride.

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9 Comments on ““I saw old autumn in the misty morn Stand shadowless like silence, listening To silence.””

  1. olof1 Says:

    I just realized things had changed really πŸ™‚ One day the leafs turned color, the next winter was here. But I new autumn was here because all teachers always forced ΓΊs out to the trees to collect colorful leafs πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ All teachers over here must love leafs πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    Autumn meant collecting hore chestnuts and acorns and after a while throwing them on each other or out in to the forest. I think my friends and I are responsible for all younger trees growing in that area now days πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    Sunny but not especially warm here today and now the air feels chilly. I guess we might have frost here tonight again. As long as it kills mosquitos and moose flies IΒ΄m ok with it πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • kat Says:

      Christer,
      You get far colder earlier than we do. I too remember collecting those leaves. We used to iron them between sheets of wax paper to save them.

      I remember only one chestnut tree near where we lived, but there were tons of acorns all over, evneh here they’re all over the ground.

      Rained all day today.

  2. Zoey & Me Says:

    Great post . . . save for Coffee Book. It reminded me of a story with my Dad as I had to ride my bike in the snow to deliver the Washington Post each morning. He bought me a Go Cart with a high basket that would hold all 123 papers (the post was thick back then like most newspapers). I drove that go cart up lawns and down through the valleys, over creeks to short cut backyards, and got so many complaints from customers that when they finally got lucky and my parents were home, that ended the kid on the buggy machine. Damn. Then it was spring and it was back to bike riding and going back to reload. It meant getting up earlier too. Thanks for that memory.

    • kat Says:

      Thanks, Z&Me,
      What propelled the go cart? The only ones I knew were carts which didn’t move except by accelerating down hills.

      In my day, boys had paper routes; girls never did. I don’t know why? Maybe the weight of the papers for us frail, young things.

      • Zoey & Me Says:

        It was a 4.0 mower engine with foot pedals and brakes. That little go cart could travel. It felt fast because I was close to the ground. But I loved those wheelie tires, fat wheels I think we called them. I hated to give it up.

  3. Bob Says:

    The seasons come and go by faster as I get older. I have to remember to stop and enjoy the fact that with the coming of the Autumnal Equinox the temperatures here in Texas might not reach 100 degrees again until next summer. But I won’t place a bet that we won’t see the century mark before next summer. According to Morning Edition on National Public Radio this was the country’s second hottest summer on record.

    By New Years day the leaves will have all fallen and we will have to face the threat of the occasional killer ice storm. Texans can’t drive in snow, but no one can successfully drive on ice. As a kid I prayed every winter night that I would awake to snow or ice covering the streets and be rewarded by an extra day off from school. There are no snow plows or blowers in Dallas Ft. Worth area and no one has snow tires on the cars or snow boots for their feet.

    • kat Says:

      Bob, the older we all get, the shorter the years. When we were 6, each year was only 1/6th of our lives. Now the years go by so quickly I think I miss a few.

      We had a few hot days in August but it wasn’t especially hot in this part of the country.

      By Nrw Yaer’s we already had a snow storm or two. Ice storms are rare for us. New Hampshire has a few killer ice storms and lost power for weeks on end.

      We needed a lot of snow before we;d get a snow day though I still loooked out the window and prayed! The TV didn’t post the list back then; the radio did report the no school announcements, and the town blew the no school alarm early in the morning.

      We always wayth in amazement when the cars down south try to drive threw the snow and on the ice.

  4. Rowen Says:

    I read this post with a sigh of longing. Here I sit in the San Francisco Bay Area with its beautiful but famously strange weather. These are our warmer daysβ€”temperate in the city, where I live, but too hot a little further south where I commute to 5 days a week.

    I love fall, and it’s a treat to go visiting in the Northeast any time between now and Thanksgiving. Enjoy.

    • kat Says:

      Rowen,
      I adore the cape this time of the year. The days are still warm though every now and then you need a sweatshirt. I am glad most tourists don’t know how beautiful it is here now. There are still a lot of them on the weekends, but the rest of the week is mine.


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