Thursday, August 14, 2008

Birch Trees

We think of autumn as beginning in October with the full spectrum of red, yellow, and orange-leafed trees, and mornings of cool air with a biting crispness.But that is not when autumn starts.

When I get up every morning the first thing I do is open the curtains and look out the window across the field and into the woods. Last week I noticed that the leaves on the birch trees were turning yellow. Driving home yesterday I saw red leaves on a tree whose leaves were green last week.

Autumn begins in mid-August. It merely reaches maturity in October. This is how it is with all the seasons. They begin in the midst of the preceding season. One year I smiled at crocuses in snow. In February when I see buckets hanging on maple trees, I know the sap is running and spring has begun.

Change functions similarly in our lives. We don't reach decisions as much as we recognize a change within and realize that the decision has been unfolding within us for some time, and the decision has already been made. We just haven't announced it to ourselves.

This may sound like a prelude to my announcing a decision, but it isn't. I simply noticed that the leaves on the birch trees are turning yellow and wanted to let you know – autumn has begun.

© 2008 by Julius Lester


"Nature is always hinting at us. It hints over and over again. And suddenly we take the hint."

Robert Frost

For those who may be wondering why I haven't written anything here in several weeks --

Blogs can be like beasts whose appetites can never be satisfied. Blogs demand words, and I read about people whose lives are devoted to writing on their blogs. Whenever I sense this blog criticizing me for not feeding it, I take a vacation. There are also times when I have nothing to say, or I may have something to say but don't want to say it aloud. Sometimes I have a lot of energy for writing here; other times I have none.

The times of words need the times of silence.


EnnaVic said...

Very true of blogs :) I miss teh blog when it goes quiet, but then again I appreciate it more when you are in the frame of mind to post.

We are just seeing signs of Spring here, with bulbs starting to reveal their flowers. We had a sharp reminder that it was still Winter with a furious hail storm this morning, exactly at the time that I walk the children to school. When we got to schol some of the 9yo boys were dancing around in the hail as if it was some ancient weather ritual and the crops depended on them.

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