The fine leaves of the Hackberry, located in the grove behind my house, flutter down in golden showers. I can’t recall when the leaves have been more beautiful. All across the county, the colors have been just magnificent. I smile to myself and think, “Vermont don’t have a thing on us folks here!”
I have always loved “fall” or Autumn. I love the harvest thing … sweet potatoes dug, walnuts to hull, Hickory nuts to gather. It’s as if Mother Nature lets go of all her bounty, produce that she alone provides.
But my Mother used to say that she thought fall was sad. “It’s like everything is dying,” she would murmur.
“But Mother,” I’d reply, “It’s not… not really.
“It’s just getting ready to go to bed, to nap through the winter, waking once again when spring comes.”
She would sigh, “Well, I just think the empty barren trees and brown fields are sad.”
And so it was, one bright April morn of ‘98, she passed. She never lived to see that particular spring.
Every year since, especially when seasons change, I think of my dear Mother.
In South Logan, where I live, almost every inch of the rich, red earth is cropped, resulting in the “groves” as I like to call them. Areas where sink holes or smaller forested areas are left. It is a true haven for all manner of wildlife, especially quail or “Bob Whites.”
My neighbor, who owns a large grove area across the road in front of my house, were gracious enough to allow me to harvest some fine black walnuts. Another neighbor (as the crow flies) and friend shares her hickory nuts, pecans and chestnuts with me. My own little grove has a wide variety of trees such as hedge-apple, acorns, persimmons, possum-grape wines and a few wild paw-paws.
“To each his own,” as they say. But to me, there is nothing quite like a real tree-ripened paw-paw. Only thing is raccoons and possums seem to have the same mind-set, so one has to watch carefully to beat the wily critters to this wild fruit.
Thus we relish the time of Autumn. For soon, rains will come and the bright glorious colors will cascade downward, changing the landscape. my only complaint regarding fall, besides leaf raking?
It just doesn’t last long enough.
But each day is a gift… that’s the way I try to look at the season and life itself.
And I shall end with a few lines of poetry:
Listen! The wind is howling;
And the air is alive with leaves.
We have had our September morns;
Now, for October eves.
‘Till next time.