"Thought for today:
"Imagine any year without the months of late September or October to grace it after summer has collapsed into fall and the last smile of Nature's year is seen within faded woods, amid autumnal wind that scatters woodland leaves across October's floor.
I love all four seasons, They each possess their own spell upon my senses and wonderment. Both spring and autumn represent to me both start and slow down of the year and remind me very much of human life in progress; the growth spurt of a child born new into the world gradually being transformed to seasonal settledness.
Just as spring is a time to look forward to the year ahead, the autumn is a time to take stock of what has passed and to prepare for the season yet to come. It is a time to rejoice in the splendour of what the surrounding environment has yet to offer before all the trees shed their colourful leaves and many of the woodland animals prepare to hibernate.
Soon the days will grow ever shorter and colder after the Autumnal Equinox on September 21st, and the nights will draw down sooner. Before we realise it, another Christmas and brand New Year will be upon us once more as visits by family members and seasonal get-togethers with friends who we only meet up with occasionally are pleasurably anticipated.
When my children were young, I would take them up to Hopton Woods in Mirfield every weekend. I will never forget the very first time their little feet scattered the fallen leaves and made them airborne amidst whoops of glee. One of my regular sayings to them as autumn approached annually was, 'When the leaves are falling, that's when autumn comes a calling'. I never knew why I grammatically inserted an inaccurate 'a', saying 'comes a calling' instead of 'comes calling', but it always sounded better that way.
My daughter Rebecca grew attached to a particular growing sapling of a copper beech in Hopton Wood as a four-year-old and to cement the memory for me in old age and for her in her own old age when that time arrives, I arranged for an up-and-coming artist then, Bruce McCulloch of Dewsbury, to go into Hopton Wood and paint the growing tree as it then was. It was at the outset of one autumnal season many years ago. Bruce did all his landscape paintings like Van Gogh, outdoors in all weathers. His prominence since has since increased the value of the £300 price tag I then paid for his work thirty years ago, eightfold. Bruce now commands over £2000 for every good-sized painting he does. More important though than all the money the painting might command today is that memory of an autumn day spent with her dad and siblings, captured over thirty years ago to recall by my daughter when she no longer has the legs to move from her rocking chair of old age.
This year, Sheila and I hope to have built all our retaining walls in our allotment before the cold weather sets in. I feel sure that it's the abundance of fresh air outside in the allotment this year that has made me feel better than all the preceding five years since I learned I had a terminal blood cancer. I look forward to seeing the last vestiges of autumn in our allotment where we planted our very own Christmas tree last year to remind us of the winter to follow.
I will end today's post of mine with the wonderful words of the poet John Donne when he wrote, 'No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face': Elergy 1X: The Autumnal."
Love and peace Bill xxx