172. Over everything connected with autumn there lingers some golden spell–some unseen influence that penetrates the soul with its mysterious power. ~Northern Advocate

O Autumn, laden with fruit, and stain’d
With the blood of the grape, pass not, but sit
Beneath my shady roof; there thou may’st rest,
And tune they jolly voice to my fresh pipe,
And all the daughters of the year shall dance!
Sing now the lusty song of fruits and flowers.
~William Blake, English poet

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*Photo courtesy Mike Bizeau

Lusty indeed is the dance of the year’s 4th child!  Escalating as she goes, she regales herself in glorious colors, and whilst strutting her hour upon earth’s stage, she reigns in majesty.  As she prepares the land for its Sabbath, her chariot enters the eastern sky at dawn with pink and purple banners flying high or she comes veiled in gray from a fog or torrents of rain.  Then after day is done she exits on the western horizon in mellow twilight, or in a blaze of red and gold, or swallowed up in the wetness of massive clouds.  When not thundering “mournful melodies” for all to hear, she’s belting out songs of joyfulness until she perishes in deep December softly playing “the harps of leafless trees.”

There is pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is rapture in the lonely shore,
There is society where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar;
I love not man less, but Nature more,
~Lord Byron, English poet

It wasn’t until Mike Bizeau posted this photo of fall-colored succulents along a beach north of Mendocino, California, that I realized lusty autumn not only sings in forests and gardens but also in places on the “lonely shore.”  What a splendid artist is the holy Yahweh!

Sing to Him, sing praise to Him; tell all of His wonderful acts.  ~1 Chronicles 16:9  ✝

9. O Autumn…pass not, but sit…and tune thy jolly voice…and all the daughters of the year shall dance! ~William Blake

In the garden, Autumn is, indeed the crowning glory of the year,
bringing us the fruition of months of thought, and care, and toil.
~Rose G. Kingsley, British Gardener and Writer

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Now that the year has grown long in the tooth, the migratory birds have moved on to warmer lands.  But the birds who overwinter here are still very visible and busy.  However, on the chillier days they, like me, “remain perched” early in the morning and later when the sun is well over the rooftops.  Nevertheless, in spite of our periodic and combined lethargy, we still manage to be out and working during the warmer parts of the day.  The “common feast for all” the garden spreads may be nearly gone and the bird’s tired wings along with my tired feet may drag somewhat, but autumn’s remaining golden glory continues to quicken our spirits.  In fact even after winter ravages the land, we, man and beast alike, who live close to the soil will venture out on the occasional warm day to search with hungry eyes for any signs of what we know lies waiting to emerge from beneath the surface of things.

Autumn’s song is indeed “a rich and lusty melody.”  It induces a healthy renewal in bodies wilted by summer’s long siege of torrid heat, and it creates a restful peacefulness that washes away the “fret and fever of life.”  “It’s jolly voice” sings a comforting song of promise that speaks of God’s circadian rhythms of life–the rhythm of changing seasons, busyness followed by stillness, “youth’s energy followed by age’s measured pace.”

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens. . .  ~Ecclesiastes 3:1   ✝