With Halloween just around the corner, we can no longer deny the crisp edge of the air and the shifted angle of sunlight that greets us in the morning. Fall has fallen.
In Autumn we return to a state of potentiality. Deciduous trees drop their leaves, giving of themselves to the earth, the sustenance for next year’s growth. The smells of decaying plant matter and moist soil replace the blossom aromas of Summer, and the last harvest of the year is gathered from trees and the ground that still holds the sun’s warmth. Fall burn piles smoulder as sodden leaves and trimmings are brightened by flame and transformed back into light and heat.
If the fire is an apt metaphor for the cycle of seasons then Autumn is the cooling of the inferno to glowing embers and delicate white ash. It is a time when we reap the benefits of the summer’s warmth that has penetrated the earth. We feel it begin to disperse, held only in deep roots and the digestions of the sleepy soil.
The change of season means a shift in pace and the patterns of life – no more lazy summer days. Some deep instinct is awoken by longer shadows and cooler air, urging us to prepare for winter. Afternoon and evening fires are dry, bright pockets where we gather after chores or walks to absorb the heat that will carry us through the night. With the sun increasingly elusive we turn to the flames for bone-deep warmth and eye-dilating light – our own tiny sun to orbit as we savor the delights and festivities of Fall.
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