Wednesday, August 13, 2008


In A New Light

It was subtle, but it was there. Walking past the dining room windows one morning this past weekend, I saw it. Unmistakable. A change in the light. Sharper, clearer, the sun came through the lace in a different way. Not the languid, hazy summer sun that usually drapes the house in August. But the brilliant, incandescent light of autumn. Trying to make it stay, I opened all the windows so the blessed wind could race through the house, from my office in the back where the birds were happily feasting on their breakfast at the blue glass feeder, all the way down the main hallway, through the coffee fragrant kitchen, past the unmade bed, and out past the vases of lilies in the library. It was glorious. Oh, do not question, it is coming! Fall. Cinderella pumpkins and witches hats. Crisp apples and cold mornings. Long and longer walks in the wind. Warm furry dogs on my feet by the fire. Yes, it’s on the way. Already one can see the unscuffed little shoes standing at the bus stops on their way once more to school.

I have always felt that the powers that be made a dreadful mistake when they declared January as the start of a new year. Oh, it should be September, shouldn’t it? Forever, that has seemed the month of new beginnings to me. My heart beats a happier rhythm whenever I see the rows of new school supplies lining store shelves. All those unwritten pages, all those still-sharp pencils. All those fresh starts.

Oh, I know there’s yet a bit of summer left. I will experience a few more heavy, humid days. But, I cannot be fooled. It’s coming. Just like in Mary Poppins, one morning, very soon, the wind will change. It will blow the weathervane around to a completely different direction and I will rise to a luminous, unspoiled beginning, with new roads to take, new pages to turn. In preparation, I’m off to buy a sparkling handfull of brand-new colored pencils.


Begin
by Brendan Kennelly.

Begin again to the summoning birds
to the sight of light at the window,
begin to the roar of morning traffic
all along Pembroke Road.
Every beginning is a promise
born in light and dying in dark
determination and exaltation of springtime
flowering the way to work.
Begin to the pageant of queuing girls
the arrogant loneliness of swans in the canal
bridges linking the past and the future
old friends passing though with us still.
Begin to the loneliness that cannot end
since it perhaps is what makes us begin,
begin to wonder at unknown faces
at crying birds in the sudden rain
at branches stark in the willing sunlight
at seagulls foraging for bread
at couples sharing a sunny secret
alone together while making good.
Though we live in a world that dreams of ending
that always seems about to give in
something that will not acknowledge conclusion
insists that we forever begin.

Painting above : Autumn Light by Martin Decent

39 comments:

  1. Your second paragraph could've been written by me ... it's exactly how I feel, how I've felt for as long as I can remember.

    I feel it in the air here as well and I also see it in the light. Just the other evening I was strolling from room to room at 8:30pm and I noticed that it was almost dark. Suddenly gone are those long, long summer evenings of late June and July.

    We practice Daylight Savings Time here in Nova Scotia which means by early November it will be nearly dark at 5pm (and I, creature of all that is dark and gloomy, secretly love it). Fires are lit, coziness happens, driveways are shoveled out under the stars. But sadly, this fall and early winter, my boy Jake is not here - a few more months of "But this time last year ... he was still here with us" to be gotten through. I miss him so much.

    It's peach season here now and he LOVED fresh peaches. He would sit dutifully beside me in the kitchen as I sliced peach after peach. 1 slice for the bowl, 1 slice for the Noodle dog and 1 slice for me. Winnie does not care for fruit of any kind. But that Jake he'd eat just about anything.

    I've been very long winded today,

    Hugs to you, Edward and Apple from me, Winnie Dixon and all those darn cats.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love Autumn and once school starts I can hardly wait for the weather to really begin having those little cold snaps. I also love winter.. okay I love all the seasons and am always ready when they begin to change.

    Blessings,
    Christi

    ReplyDelete
  3. Autumn has always been my favorite time of the year, and that us why I chose early October for my wedding date almost 34 years ago.

    At first I thought the painting in this post was a photograph! it's just exquisite, and a lovely poem to accompany it. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I totally agree. The years beginning should be the season of fall. That is my favorite season as well.

    I love bringing out the sweaters and sitting snug and warm in front of the fire.

    And Hoshi says thank you for stopping by to say hello to her. How lucky Edward is to have been adopted by you.

    Melissa

    ReplyDelete
  5. I felt it, too!

    I always feel invigorated as the days begin to cool .... even slightly. And, oh yes, those crisp, clean, cooler mornings are like a new beginning.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Feeling a bit silly because I thought "that photo is so stunning it should be a painting",but evidently I'm not the only one, which is good (thanks pat!).A beautiful choice of poem also.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Yes, it should be September!

    We felt that ever so slight change in the air this week, too, and it made me so excited. Fall and winter are my favorites and they're just around the corner.

    ReplyDelete
  8. You write so well! Now I want some hot cider!
    Come fall, come!
    Becky
    PS The poem was nice too!

    ReplyDelete
  9. This post took me away. Thank you.

    Yesterday, I woke to find that the sun had hidden itself away, after only a week's worth of summer weather. Summer is over for us.

    Autumn is on it's way.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Well Pamela, living in Ireland, we don't seem to have had a Summer at all this year so I'm not ready for Autumn, though it marches towards us relentlessly. The leaves are already turning and the mornings are misty.

    Just to be the odd one out, I always feel that Spring is the start of the year, April for me. I love the snowdrops and daffodils peeping up through the bare earth.

    I loved the poem too and that gorgeous, colourful painting.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I so enjoyed this post. Autumn is my favourite time of the year. I was just outside looking at my sons pumpkin patch. My husband is an artist and painted my sons a little sign with a bright orange pumpkin on it which marks the patch perfectly. It's nice to know there are others who feel the same way!

    Gillian

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am so incredibly pleased that you visited my fledgling blog. I love meeting new people, but most of all I love following them home to find a new beautiful world to visit. Your blog is spectacular. The artwork displayed here is beyond gorgeous and touches my heart. But most of all I am in LOVE with Edward. Up until we found Crumpet...my favorite breed of dog was a Chow Chow. We've owned several over the years and they are such wonderous animals. Now that we've discovered the terrier family we are hooked. So here we have Edward who is the combination of my two favorite breeds. What a magical sweetheart he is. Just looking at him makes me smile. I'm sure he and Crumpet would be fast friends. Now I'm off to spend much more time snooping around your amazing blog.
    And I'm sure I'll be back often.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Oh Pamela...I loved reading this post...I found myself getting so excited and practically running to the window to see if I could see or feel the first signs of autumn....only to find it no where in sight..I fear the humidity will be here a good while longer...woe is me...

    I do so enjoy your writing ...

    ReplyDelete
  14. I am in my late thirties, and my school years are far behind me, but I still feel the tug of something new every September, as if I should be stocking up on pencils and paper (which I usually do, because of the back-to-school sales) or buying school clothes that are always a little too big so I can "grow into them" as the weeks pass by (this is NOT something I try to do anymore--the growing, that is, not the buying of clothes.)

    Great post, cool painting.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I thought the same thing this weekend. Isn't it earlier than ever this year? That subtle change is one of my most exhilerating, looked-forward-to events of the year. Autumn is also my very favorite season. I was tempted to mull some cider, but it was still a bit warm for that. Soon though...

    ReplyDelete
  16. The change of light here began this morning .. it was dark when I got up at 5:45 ... I love the change of seasons and especially love fall and spring because of the morning light.

    When I took those rose photos I too saw a face in one ... I was going to photoshop in eyes but decided to leave it to the imagination of the viewer ... its always nice to see you and Edward!

    :-Daryl

    ReplyDelete
  17. Pamela, this was a wonderful post and so perfect for this morning in KY! Like so many others have mentioned here, fall is my favorite time of year as well.Just this morning as I let Lizzie out for her morning "constitutional", the air was crisp, cool, and clean..The heaviness of summer, though still lingering on for a while longer, was nowhere to be found this morning...How I long for the smells of pumpkin spice candles and to be surrounded with rusty oranges, sage greens, and crimsons..Autumn is knocking and my door is wide open:-)....

    ReplyDelete
  18. Another kindred spirit here, I just adore Autumn too. It's definately on the way, I notice it stepping outside first thing in the morning, there is a heavy dew and just that faint damp autumn smell. The Rowans berries have already turned and are dripping with red berries and I just can't wait for log fires, autumn colours and woodland walks with the dogs!

    ReplyDelete
  19. I do so love Autumn! Although here in Alberta, Canada, it doesn't last very long before the snow starts to fall!

    ReplyDelete
  20. My year has always started in September, I've always felt a surge of energy in the autumn and it's always been my favourite season. I've had so little time to read blogs lately but after a quick look down your recent posts I mean to come back and read them properly, after this weekend life should get a less frenetic hopefully.pvbkcre

    ReplyDelete
  21. Opening windows and letting the breeze in is one of my favourite past times. It lifts the spirits, does it not?

    ReplyDelete
  22. Ask a child to say the months of the year and some will begin with "September!" Just yesterday I felt a tinge of the end of the Summer and the start of a new year, a school year. That painting certainly captures the Autumnal light. I love the seasons.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Hi Edward, if you pop over to my blog, you'll see Buster's lovely caterpillar!

    Love

    Buster and Gina

    ReplyDelete
  24. I, too, am detecting the change slowly approaching..but since Sept means going back to work full time for me, I keep the calendar in July until half of Aug is over, and turn the calendar from Aug to Sept the first weeknd school's in session.

    My own mind game!
    :0)
    Tara

    ReplyDelete
  25. I could have written these very words. Autumn is coming a little earlier this year. The pumpkins and gourds are for sale already two weeks ahead of the normal time. We arrived at Cranberry Cottage last Friday to find some beech tree leaves already laying like artwork sprinkled here and there in our garden. I even smelled autumn early this year. It is that lovely scent that rises from the woods along where the cottage lives.

    I too long for the first cold days of autumn. Wrappig up in a quilt or wearing a warm sweater and scarf while out taking our walks in the woods. Then coming indoor and making a cup of real hot cacao to warm you inside. Ah! Autumn is the very best season!

    You will enjoy the blog entry I am doing today as it has very much to do with this.

    Hugs ~
    Heidi

    ReplyDelete
  26. Pamela,

    I agree with you whole heartily. Why does the Gorsuch catalogue have to be so expensive? If it were more affordable, I would be buying lots of items.

    Have a great weekend.

    By the way, I added you to my list of favorites. Your blog is so beautiful and inspirational.

    Melissa

    ReplyDelete
  27. What beautiful autumn colors! Autumn is my favorite time of year, even though it's not really a remarkable season here in Lima. Autumn in Colorado and Wyoming is gorgeous. God, I miss it.

    ReplyDelete
  28. just tried to e-mail you my wee illustration and it came back. what is your e-mail?
    Patricia

    ReplyDelete
  29. Lovely picture in the previous post- I'll check out the link thank you.

    Yes Autumn is wonderful- my fav season. There are so many talented people on Etsy celebrating Autumn at the moment.

    ReplyDelete
  30. I agree - September should be the start of the year! Since my husband is a teacher it does feel a bit like it is at our house. You are a wonderful writer!

    ReplyDelete
  31. You have penned a most eloquent piece of what we all feel. It dances with fleeting thoughts and emotions, wishes, remembrances, hopes and delights, and the whyfore's of the customs we cling to for identity. Should you title it, it might read The Pregnant Autumn.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Autumn is my favorite season, but I'm actually quite sad summer is over so soon this year!

    ReplyDelete
  33. "But the brilliant, incandescent light of autumn. "

    --Oh, how i love Autumn. Yes, we can feel the beginnings of it coming around the corner here too. A few weeks back we had this incredible, monsoon like rainfall, and ever since then it hasn't got quite as hot. It's like it washed out all the accumulated heat.

    This weekend it has rained non stop--very unusual for these arid region but how wonderful it is!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Pamela, you capture well with words and image this time of year. I too am noticing a shift in the light. There is excitement over the kids going back to school and me getting back to writing but a sadness over the slow days of summer getting shorter.

    ReplyDelete
  35. How beautifully you write. A sheer joy to visit.
    I too have enjoyed a canopied bed in a friend's house, restored to it's original decor of the
    1880's. She was an artist whose attention to detail was impeccable. Balancing on a ladder 15' from the floor, with a fine sable brush, she invisibly mended the water damaged original French wallpaper.
    Within a year of my overnighting, both her house and ours, and another 10 of the total 13 historic houses were consumed by a major bushfire. The last remaining was the least historic due to unsympathetic renovations.
    In memory I pick up the pink silk nightie laid out upon my antique mahogany bed adrift with pillows and luxuriate in dreams

    Should you discover a yen for more cobwebs to sweep, feel welcome to delve deeper in my back-blogs.

    ReplyDelete
  36. How beautifully you write. A sheer joy to visit.
    I too have enjoyed a canopied bed in a friend's house, restored to it's original decor of the
    1880's. She was an artist whose attention to detail was impeccable. Balancing on a ladder 15' from the floor, with a fine sable brush, she invisibly mended the water damaged original French wallpaper.
    Within a year of my overnighting, both her house and ours, and another 10 of the total 13 historic houses were consumed by a major bushfire. The last remaining was the least historic due to unsympathetic renovations.
    In memory I pick up the pink silk nightie laid out upon my antique mahogany bed adrift with pillows and luxuriate in dreams

    Should you discover a yen for more cobwebs to sweep, feel welcome to delve deeper in my back-blogs.

    ReplyDelete
  37. It's the same here. More Autumnal than Summer. Still h oping for Summer though.
    I actually can sense real Autumn in the air when it comes. I can smell it and feel it. The light is different, the sounds are different. Amazing.
    Not sure about Thornfield.

    ReplyDelete
  38. I love Autumn,ever sinds i was a little girl.I love the light,the air,and that special time when its not yet dark...We then sit in our livingroom and lit candles,drink tea and just be still..

    ReplyDelete
  39. I believe most people see September as the 'real' start of the new year. It's too bad that September doesn't bring cool crisp days anymore, at least not where I live. Global warming has caused September to be often as warm and humid as August. I love this line of yours: "the brilliant, incandescent light of autumn."

    It's poetry!

    ReplyDelete

I love to read your comments! Each and every one!