Where Are the Autumns of Yesteryear?
We’re well along in the second of my two favorite months — September….. October…. But something’s very wrong. Green is everywhere. Unwelcome green! June and July are well past – but their temperatures and their very colors are with us still.
Essence of Autumn
Someone brought and enormous bucket of purple iris to D&R Greenway this week — iris is a spring herald, not fall’s.
Once I wrote a poem about stubborn autumn leaves: “They have had their chance. Now I want them down… since they would not play tapers to our waltz….”
Autumn Frames Canal and Delaware River, Near Prallsville Mills
I don’t want them down in 2017. I want those colors to flare and flame so that one thinks that level of scarlet and crimson and gold and even purple would put out the night sky itself.
Whatever happened to autumn?
We know the answer, But we are mandated to call its cause a myth.
Where are the autumns of yesteryear?
“Mellow fruitfulness” at Russo’s in Tabernacle in the Jersey Pine Barrens:
Keats says it for all of us. He dares counter to spring, telling my favorite season, this autumn manque, “thou hast thy music
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun; Conspiring with him how to load and bless With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run; To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees, And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core; To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells With a sweet kernel; to set budding more, And still more, later flowers for the bees, Until they think warm days will never cease, For summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells. Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store? Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find Thee sitting careless on a granary floor, Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind; Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep, Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers: And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep Steady thy laden head across a brook; Or by a cider-press, with patient look, Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours. Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they? Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,-- While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day, And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue; Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn Among the river sallows, borne aloft Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies; And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn; Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft, And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.
Red Cranberry Vines at Chatsworth, New Jersey