SUMMER’S ALMOST GONE.
Summer is slowly coming to an end and before we know it the leaves will start to change colour and fall in preparation for winter. To me the autumn months are truly the best with warm days and cool nights. According to Greek Mythology it is the time when Persephone must return to the underworld to her Husband Hades. With this return Demeter, Goddess of the Harvest and Crops, also Persephone’s Mother, withholds her bounty from the Earth until Persephone returns in the spring.
The autumn or fall whichever you wish to call it brings an end to the hot humid days of summer and a welcomed respite before winter and its’ short cold blustery days. It is the time when nature is in her most colourful glory with the leaves of red and gold. It is a somewhat sad time towards the end with the leaves all fallen and the stark branches stand out against the sombering skies signaling the advent of winter. As the days cool one sees the formations of birds in their thousands flying south to winter habitats in the warmer climes. Squirrels run frantically about gathering the last of the nuts to store for the coming winter and the frogs and toads burrow into the mud to survive another freezing. It is time when the northern countries and their denizens hunker down to await the first frozen blast of Boreas’ breath.
Autumn is a special time of year when we celebrate Thanksgiving, thanking Mother Earth for the bountiful harvests. It is a spooky time of year when Hallowe’en comes round and all the ghosts and goblins come out to frolic to the shouts of “Trick or Treat” on that eeriest of nights. Towards the end of autumn the first frosts set in covering the ground with a glittering carpet of frozen dew. Soon though this will give way to the days of ice and snow of winter and leaden skies hanging dully over head in an oppressive, depressive backdrop. The sun skirts low over the southern horizon as it has made its’ way below the equator to the Tropic of Capricorn. There it will bide for a short time then begin its slow climb back north as the Earths’ rotation again swings the Northern Hemisphere back closer to the sun and with that the return of spring. It is a cycle almost as old as the planet itself repeated yearly throughout the millennia, a cycle of birth, life and death.
For those of us over a certain age it is the autumn of our years, meaning that life for us is ¾ over and we are entering the winter of our days. It’s a time for us to look back and see the fruits of our labours fulfilled. It is a time of meditation and speculation. Speculation of what we might have done differently and also of what awaits as the fire within slowly fades and the long sleep draws nigh.