Today was littered with tiny, ordinary gifts that brought me back to the present moment . . . a prelude to the autumn leaves soon to come. Sharing with you the gift of —
Autumn Leaves (1856), by John Everett Millais. Image courtesy of WikiPaintings
* A succulent chicken roasting slow, redolent with the aroma herbes de provence and sliced shallots
* The first cool rains of autumn, washing away the dust and dry of summer
* Sipping the first spiced apple cider this fall
* Making pumpkin honey bread with chocolate chips and pecans, its scent in the oven warming the house
* My son excited, telling me how happy he is with the rain, and the cider, and the bread, and the chicken, and the season
* The voice of my child reminding me that it’s the little things in life that make it wonderful
* Feeling like I could BREATHE for the first time in a very long while
Hoping this day brought whispers and gifts of autumn your way . . .
Ode to Autumn, by John Keats
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.