Clyde, Time was: We enjoyed autumnal weather

Published 12:00 am Sunday, September 9, 2018

Time was, fall came. And went. Not like the fog on little cat feet, but on the gossamer wings of a monarch — gossamer meaning the time of fall when the goose is getting fat. Oh, September mornings, one lonely dogwood leaf decides to change to crimson with bronze tipped in gold leaf.

“With what a glory comes and goes the year?” — Longfellow “To Autumn.”

Time to surrender to the weather and the mosquitoes that surround us; don’t let issues that rise to the surface surmount us, rather dwell on your survivance, surmise on your sustenance, no matter how sully or simple, and search for surrealism in every sinew of a single sprout.

Sit back and lounge at Koco Java or your own backyard or 40 acres and survey “to her fair works did Nature link the human soul that through us ran. And much it grieved my heart to think what man has made of man.” — Wordsworth.

We sit idly by, helpless as each token leaf turns and falls down to cover the ground that gave it its birth. Take comfort in Genesis 8:22: “While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter and day and night shall not cease.”

Turn over a new leaf. Don’t fall for Christmas decorations at Waxmart; instead try to slip the word “autumnal” into today’s conversation.

Choose a leaf — not on a table top. They come in all sizes and shapes: lanceolate, oblanceolate, spatulate, pinnate, trifoliate, etc.

Leaf: A lateral outgrowth from a stem that constitutes a unit of the foliage of a plant and functions primarily in food manufacture by photosynthesis.

Where would we be without them?

Remember that the next time you cuss a pile to rake to the gutter. The average Facebook brainwashed hand does not touch a leaf, ever, or a leaf rake or a compost pile.

We were so proud to know names of trees in our notebook collection in biology. Catalpa, scaly bark hickory, sassafras, butternut, persimmon, Ailanthus altissimo or Quercus alba.

Pulp became leaves of books for consumers. All those tariffs only waste more paper to keep a record of new ones.

Are there fewer writers or readers? It’s the end of the sound of a scholar “leafing through a book” and maybe the end of knowledge, as we know it. Holding a book is a lost art. Where have all the libraries gone, long time ago? We wait to see.

“And look out the window, dear. … Ah, darling, it is Behrman’s masterpiece – he painted it there the night that the last leaf fell.”— O. Henry.

The first frost and night air linger, wasted on artificial closed rooms with no warmth of the hearth, with no footwarmers waiting for hot coals for the buggy or bedwarmers between the cold sheets. Today we must have constant comfort, heat and “air.” Roll the car windows down, people.

If fall comes, can winter be far behind? Unseal the jars of canned goods in the storehouses from the pantry — a veritable cornucopia — cornu, horn in Latin, and copiae, plenty.

“It is not for you to know the times of the seasons.” — Acts 1:7.

Store up for the winter. For a few, gather firewood. The leaf roller larvae roll up to nest in a brown leaf. Leaf hoppers leave spittle on the stems, and leaf peepers spend loads of Yankee money driving around the mountain crooks and leave lots of trash.

Thank God each time you see a turning leaf, or one falls on your head, in all its glory; look for a leaf trace.

“Let the vineyards be fruitful, O Lord, and fill to the brim our cup of blessings. Gather a harvest from the seeds that we have sown, so that we may be fed the bread of life. Gather our hopes and dreams and unite them with the prayers we now offer, Grace us with your presence at our table, Lord, and give us a foretaste of the feast to come. Amen.”

Clyde is a Salisbury artist.