• 63°

Wayne Hinshaw: Autumn leaves create a striking show

Every leaf a flower

Bright leaves on the trees along the creek at Providence Church Road and Goodman Lake Road are reflected in the water, like a mirror.  Photo by Wayne Hinshaw, for the Salisbury Post

Bright leaves on the trees along the creek at Providence Church Road and Goodman Lake Road are reflected in the water, like a mirror.
Photo by Wayne Hinshaw, for the Salisbury Post

The autumn of the year is the time when I have a joyous, melancholy feeling. I am happy to see the season change and feel the coolness of the fall breeze that is refreshing to my soul, yet I am sad to see the summer pass away, leaving me with only the memories of the days that have just passed by me forever.

Over the weekend, I drove around the eastern part of the county and took a walk in the woods at High Rock Lake looking for photos of the autumn colors in nature.

It occurred to me how the trees play games with me in the fall. They look like they are dying, with their green leaves turning to bright colors, then brown. The trees are not dying but only playing “hide and seek” with me. I have faith in nature that in the spring the trees will pop out again wearing their new emerald green coats.

Isn’t it interesting that the trees really reach their peak in beauty only as their leaves die for the winter?

The seasons of the year run in cycles or stages much like our own lives. Each season has a reason and a need for the survival of mankind. We have complained all summer long about the heat, wishing only for the coolness of autumn. Now, feeling that coolness, we complain that we are cold and think surely spring has to come again soon.

Albert Camus said, “Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”

Walking in the woods, the cool winds seem to rip the colorful leaves from the branches of the trees, leaving them embarrassingly naked to face the cold winter ahead. On some trees there is a defiant leaf or two that fight the winds and just will not fall to the ground, much like a stubborn child who will not go to bed. The child ends up in bed and the defiant leaf ends up falling to the ground.

The leaves, kidnapped by the winds, dance around in the wind and are a pleasure for me to watch in their choreographed exit from the trees. You have to slow down and watch the fluttering leaves, twirling like exotic colored birds fighting for the perfect resting place on the ground where they will spend the winter and decay into the soil.

The bright, intense sunshine of this fall day makes the color show even more striking. The maples, which were green a few weeks ago, have now changed into their gowns of gold and crimson waiting for the plunge to the ground.

This must surely be mother nature’s way of saying, “A job well done, now take a rest for the winter. But, trees be ready to come back to life in the spring and start the cycle all over again.”

As I walk on the carpet of bright colored leaves, I hear the crunching of the dry leaves under my feet being trampled into the damp soil of the woods’ floor.

Is that crunching sound really a whisper from nature saying, “Summer is gone. Summer is gone?”

The turning of the leaves and then falling to the ground makes me a child again in my heart. I remember as a child frolicking in a big pile of leaves at home. Oh, such fun diving into the waist-tall pile of damp, musty foliage and feeling like I was diving into a king’s bed. Maybe, just maybe, I was a king for a moment long ago.

Take some time and watch the leaves flutter in the winds. Take some time and look at the beautiful colors of the reflections of the trees in waters of a pond or lake, or just enjoy a day of fishing on High Rock Lake with all the colors of fall hanging on the trees around the water like Christmas ornaments that will soon be packed away until next year.



Blotter: Rockwell man arrested on felony drug, breaking and entering charges


Rep. Amber Baker discusses legislative session during Rowan Democrats breakfast meeting


Thousands of locals, out-of-towners gather for a groovy time at annual Hippie Fest


N.C. Zoo ready for expansion if lawmakers OK funding


RSS budgeting for tens of millions in federal COVID-19 relief funding

East Spencer

‘Back in full swing’ for the spring: East Spencer community gathers for food, fun and fellowship at Spring Fest


Rowan native Lingle among those honored with NC Military Veterans Hall of Fame induction


Former pro baseball player, Tar Heel standout Russ Adams finds new career with Trident Insured


Profoundly gifted: Salisbury boy finishing high school, associates degree at 12


Cheerwine Festival will stick to Main Street, stay away from new park in September


Celebrating Rowan County’s early cabinetmakers


Service Above Self announces youth challenge winners


Economic Development Commission creates search tool for people seeking Rowan County jobs


Amy-Lynn Albertson: Arts and Ag Farm Tour set for June 5

High School

High school baseball: Mustangs top Falcons on strength of hurlers


Biz Roundup: Application process now open for Rowan Chamber’s 29th Leadership Rowan class


Keith Mitchell leads McIlroy, Woodland by 2 at Quail Hollow


States scale back vaccine orders as interest in shots wanes


Major US pipeline halts operations after ransomware attack


NC budget dance slowed as GOP leaders differ on bottom line


Judge limits footage that family can see of deputy shooting


People receiving first dose of COVID-19 vaccine grows by less than 1%


Rowan-Salisbury Schools brings Skills Rowan competition back to its roots


Weak jobs report spurs questions about big fed spending