Thursday, September 24, 2009


The Older Sister

Spring is a girl clad in pink flounces. She skips, she flirts - shares secrets, tells lies. Her thoughts are like air and with barefoot steps she treads on the wildflowers. She misplaces her warm hours and never wonders where they’ve gone. She sings herself to sleep.

Autumn is her older sister, wearing heathered tweed. Her colours, like her dreams, are richer, more intense, and although she knows they will fade to ice and silver in the season yet to come, she serenely paints her masterpiece in furbelows of orange, burnt by the September sun, with an arabesque of scarlet, and a bagatelle of forest green.
She gathers her joys round her like the handsome woolen shawls her own two hands have made. With memory in the warp and hope in the weft, they feel soft against her skin, they gift her with a secret smile. She pulls her chair up hearthside and reads tall tales by the flickering flame - tales of legend and of myth, of ancient pathways through the mountains, of castles floating on the sea.
She drinks in delicious perfumes that are hers, and hers alone - the scent of apples, of cinnamon, of rain. Her hours are set aglow with a celebratory fire made from all the many sunny days now past; it is a fire stoked with gratitude and tended with anticipation, for she knows it provides all the warmth she will need for the colder days to come.

How sad a year would be without her visit - how colourless, how pale.
In a gust of wind, amid swirling leaves, she will arrive at my gate this afternoon.
My door is open to welcome her.

"No Spring nor Summer beauty hath such grace
As I have seen in one Autumnal face."
John Donne

47 comments:

  1. I agree with you and with John Donne - where would we be without the smells, the colour, the whole feel of autumn. I love it too.

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  2. Trees let go of their leaves, and are enriched.

    A good lesson.

    Garden & Be Well, XO Tara

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  3. That's beautiful!

    How odd that the year is at it's loveliest when life is disintegrating and death near. Halloween is my favorite holiday largely because of the autumnal colors associated with it. All that being said, I still prefer spring, the season of tender green leaves and other new beginnings.

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  4. Beautiful.. My door is open as well

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  5. Autumn here in Northern France is a delightful time of year - I am surrounded by beech trees which will be ablaze with colour in a few weeks time. I love this season - letting go of summer and preparing for the harsher winter chill.

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  6. Your posts are always amazing! You let us think and stay still!!
    Thank you so much !

    Greet

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  7. What you have posted is absolutely beautiful.I will keep it and treasure the creative talent.

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  8. How wonderfully you always put things! I love to read your posts - thankyou :)

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  9. How enchantingly you weave your words, and leave your readers mesmerized. Thank you for the lovely journey.

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  10. Dear Pamela, your post reminded me of a few years ago when my partner's parents came to visit us here in Canada from Scotland at this time of year. David's mum (a lifelong gardener) was very sceptical about the autumnal colours she often saw in pictures of places like Vermont in magazines. She was convinced that all those blazing colours had been computer enhanced. Until..... she saw those sugar maples in Algonquin Park in all their glory. She could not believe her eyes. She was mesmerised by the beauty of it all. I will always cherish this memory of her.

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  11. I have always been partial to the older sister.

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  12. How beautiful! It makes me appreciate Autumn even more! What lovely art! You always make me feel better!

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  13. Mmmm mmmm mmmm. You never cease to amaze me with your intensely descriptive and beautiful writing. I now love Autumn even more. Thank you.
    xo Isa

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  14. It is sweet to have sisters that bring out the best in us. Very nice! xoxo

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  15. I just knew you would write something beautiful for the first day of Autumn. I am looking forward to seeing all of the images you describe play out during this wonderful season.

    ~Jermaine~

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  16. John Donne wrote such a beautiful piece about Autumn. He really says it all about the richness of the season.
    A stunning picture too, that complements the writing well.
    Thank you for sharing his work.

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  17. It's the best. I missed it when we lived in southern California. Beautifully said.

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  18. What a beautiful description of my favourite time of year. Thank you, I've now got the push I needed to head back to my studio and be creative :)

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  19. She is the best, dearest and secretly the most loved sister. Thank you for this Pamela- beutifully done, as always.

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  20. Autumn is indeed here! How well John Donne summarized it. Thanks for sharing, Pamela. I'm new to your blog and I love it. Edward is so adorable. :) Happy Autumn to you! Sincerely, Theresa

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  21. So with you on this one. Early Autumn is my fav season. I love the rich colours, the blue sky, the flowers in their last flush, the way the grass softly gives under your boots with a light frost. Oooo and conkers- those little gems of bright wood on the ground.

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  22. Hello P&E,

    I would keep my door open but the welcoming fire hasn't been lit yet! The beautiful colours and perfumes though, are fine.

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  23. Your post expresses my own mood exactly! Beautiful words from both you and Donne. Thank you for this!!
    xoxo Gigi

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  24. Isn't AUTUMNAL
    such a sad
    melancholy
    and lovely word.

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  25. Lovely! I was married in October so that I could cherish and celebrate autumn always.

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  26. Pamela, you are such a gifted writer, you have the enviable ability to write "what oft is thought but ne'r so well expressed".

    Is the painting by Jesse King?

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  27. "Here, where still evening is, not noon, nor night ;
    Where no voluptuousness, yet all delight.
    In all her words, unto all hearers fit,
    You may at revels, you at council, sit." ~ J.D.

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  28. I love the rhythm, humor and love – the secrets and the lies. Your poetry stands strong even next to John Donne’s. We are having summery weather in Maine, but I'm ready for fall.

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  29. Autumn is my favorite. And winter scares me..so please have 'fall' stay longer. Your writing is a feast.

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  30. i love the autumn.
    the colors are so warm and muted.
    and at autumn's end, on fire.

    xxx

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  31. lovely personifications! I love autumn too and she's creeping in slowly round here just now...

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  32. The perfect autumn tribute Anne, xv.

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  33. Wonderful writing, as always, I've so enjoyed reading your post - I too have my door open to welcome glorious, colourful autumn:)

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  34. The older sister is wrapped in hope as I am an only child and I've always wanted an autumn sister. As I ponder this, your post stirred my heart, reminders of autumn in the leaves, dancing around my shoes, wishing for the autumn older sister to dance with me.

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  35. I haven't been by for a while but I'm so glad I did today - your prose is so beautifully descriptive of autumn, in all its hues and fragrances. I love this post and cannot stop reading it!

    The John Donne quote is so simple but utterly beguiling. Thank you so much for this post. Oh and I won't stay away for long now!

    Jeanne

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  36. Oh hon..that is just how I feel and so beautifully written!! Thank you for sharing this!! Hugs, Sarah

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  37. Once again, your prose of beautiful - I look forward to your writing and really enjoy your blog!!
    Judie

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  38. oh I've got such a long time to wait for my favourite season. You have a wonderful way with words Pamela.

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  39. Encapsulates the season beautifully. Do you know 'The Magic Apple Tree', by Susan Hill? In it she speaks about loving autumn more than spring as she gets older, because spring can often disappoint, but autumn never does.

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  40. How sweet! I love your writing and Edward is adorable!
    Autumn is my favorite season, I feel empowered and fresh. Thank you for sharing. I wish you the best!

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  41. Such beautiful words! Your descriptions are always wonderful...It was nice thinking of autumn as an older sister:)

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  42. dear pamela i am ever amazed at your wonderful way with words..... so beautiful x

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I love to read your comments! Each and every one! Though I'm always reading your comments, I may not respond in the comment section. If you want to write me directly, you may do so at pamela@pamelaterry.net. Thank you for reading!