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It is the first day of Autumn and here are some quotes for the occasion…

 

“Autumn has caught us in our summer wear.”

–Philip Larkin

 

“Even if something is left undone, everyone must take time to sit still and watch the leaves turn.”

-Elizabeth Lawrence

 

“Walking through the forest it’s as if a fire has been lit. Colors burn at the top of the trees. Leaves fall like sparks to the ground. If one lands on my head, will I be able to understand other tongues? They crunch under my feet as colors are unveiled. Sounds like autumn to me. I walk through various shades of red, orange, and yellow. It is as if the fire is catching. The true colors of the leaves only begin to show as they begin to die. Is that what it takes to reveal our true colors?”

Participant: Field Notes from Here and Now

 

 “I have stirred into the ground the offal, and the decay of the growth of past seasons, and so mended the earth and made its yield increase.”

-Wendell Berry

 

 “In the garden, Autumn is, indeed the crowning glory of the year, bringing us the fruition of months of thought and care and toil.  And at no season, safe perhaps in Daffodil time, do we get such superb colour effects as from August to November.”

-Rose G. Kingsley

 

“It is the summer’s last great heat, It is the fall’s first chill: They meet.”

–Sarah Morgan Bryan Piatt

 

“Autumn days come quickly, like the running of a hound on the moor.”

–Irish proverb

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Wendell Berry is a farmer and the “mayor” of Fort William, KY. But his true gift is his ability to capture words and then turn them loose again in ways that make us see differently. He is a seer. By that, I mean he sees things and then writes about them and before you know it a tree a bird or darkness have become windows to see grace or grief or joy.

I am fortunate that Keightley gave me a copy of Berry’s New Collected Poems for Christmas. It is the kind of book to pick up when words become stale or thoughts hit a dead end or for just about any other reason. Berry has a knack of seeing things from multiple angles and this helps the reader to see things more clearly as well. Here are two poems I enjoy, one prior to dinner and the other afterward.

For the Hog Killing

“Let them stand still for the bullet, and stare the shooter in the eye,

Let them die while the sound of the shot is in the air, let them die as they fall,

let the jugular blood spring hot to the knife, let its freshet be full,

let this day begin again the change of hogs into people, not the other way around,

for today we celebrate again our lives’ wedding with the world,

for by our hunger, by this provisioning, we renew the bond.”

and

Prayer After Eating

“I have taken in the light

That quickened eye and leaf.

May my brain be bright with praise

Of what I eat, in the brief blaze

Of motion and of thought.

May I be worthy of my meat.”

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