Brown and grey leaves are being strewn across a dead tree trunk by the swirling morning breeze, in the clearing of the surrounding canyon forest. Autumn always reminds me of the day I went to lock my grandparents’ home, after the old man died and his wife left for the home of the aged. When I took a last look at the back-garden, the yellow, red and brown leaves were also draped over the unused garden furniture. Gone were the warm days of summer we used to spend under that tree, sipping grandma’s tea and getting transported on the deep, wise voice of grandpa. I've always found the sad, empty feeling very haunting – almost too sad to recall – but every autumn I re-live it.
As I walk the path to go and meet the dawn of another autumn day, my sadness is lifted by the rosy, orange tint of the promise in the eastern sky. Like grandparents, nature too has to turn down the pace of life. Everything that lives has to (at some stage) take some time out – and eventually go on to rest forever -so too, there is much joy in spring, birth of a new time on earth and rejuvenated energy of life after rest; each its own beauty, each its own sorrow.
Last night I pointed my 12x magnification binoculars at the Milky Way through the clear mountain air and again felt that infinite feeling of minuteness wash over me. It is simply astounding to see so many stars and planets in the small 5 degree view of the lenses. How small are we, how small are the ants and micro-organisms? Unfathomable, is the word when I look up from the canyon floor and gaze across the ridge of the towering mountain; the sun just promising to show through the silver outline on the trees. When the fireball suddenly does appear, it is sure to ease the numbness of cold in my fingers from that hour before its rise. Already after five or so minutes, the day has broken and feels like a sudden disenchanted contentment – almost like after a sexual climax. I suppose if we could, we would hang around the second before sunrise or sunset, or climax; forever.
Autumn is a way for earth to show us that the time has come to rest. For the earth to give us all its pleasures, security, air, food and splendour, it is now time to go into hibernation and demise to gather strength and enable the same again when spring comes knocking.
Will this government also take its rest (or demise)? Will there be an end to the spate of crime, the constant fidgeting in my heart of a country with (seemingly) only problems? Will the endless inflation graph ever top out and take a breather, will our perpetual growth of mankind ever take a respite, or will we be forced to – by nature? A spate of autumn in humanity’s quests is required for us to survive, be it by our conscious thinking or the unfortunate toll of our actions.
Today, however, I will drink in the colours, aromas and cool breezes that constitute the change of season. Today I will wallow in the warmth of the April mid-morning sun and let ease be on my mind.
Such rich and amazing colours; autumn has.