Everything Changes in September

Everything changes in September. First, it's the leaves. By now they've started to deepen in color, fading from brilliant, vibrant shades of green. They yellow at the corners and as the days wear on the hue pushes itself through the veins of the leaves, shades of gold and amber and rust overtaking the emerald tones. One by one, leaf by leaf, bough by bough, ruby red and burnt ochre become the new normal. A once-green-washed field becomes flecked with a different kind of earth tone, and the far-off view of a treeline becomes a hunt for the most autumnal color in the bunch.

Next its the air. Cool breezes reach into the humid atmosphere like fingertips, and at first it's just a lick of coldness here and a shiver there. The heat that once poured off the pavement and hung in the air, settled like a blanket over the neighborhood, bearing down on bodies, begins to lift higher and higher and higher until you're tempted to reach for it, on tippy toes, fingers outstretched, trying to find leverage on a leg up, it just sliding out of your palms until all you can do is bat at the chill in the air, in vain. Like a sharpening of the world that surrounds you, the melting weight of summer heat is replaced by the kind of air you can feel on your tongue and beneath your toes and on the backs of your ears. And the first time it seizes your body from head to toe and wraps itself around your wrists and ankles and throat is the first time you know that this is exactly the way you need to feel.

Then the days change, and so do the nights. One becoming shorter, one lengthening in a way that logically, you know is in the tiniest increments but that feels so much greater, so much more sudden, so much more forceful. The first time you note the darkness when your body wants to believe it's still light is the first time you look into the nights ahead of you and start to rearrange your mental picture of them. The moments backed by natural light become more valuable for their relative rarity, now, in these coming times of change, and the ones set against a sky of deep purple and shades of blue take turns in feeling infinite and so very much the essence of limitation.
In the meantime, the elements of a world set against and familiar to and born into these things change. The creatures shed their summer coats and begin to bundle up for the season ahead; they collect their rations for the desert months and slow their heart rates down. We store away our clothes dyed in hues of pastel and pink and of course the stark white. We grow long our hair and open—then shut, again—the windows, lay down the warm rugs, change out the silk flowers in vases on our indoor tables, tucking away the signs of warm days spent under the sun or hiding from its heat in the shade of umbrellas and shadows. We pull out slow cookers and dutch ovens and turn on ovens and tea kettles. We switch to red wine and hot coffee.

We return to a state of mind that triggers memories of black-and-white marbled composition books, eraser dust, dim library corners, lunch boxes, and paper-bag book covers. We alternate between dreading the return to such things and missing their presence in our lives, wishing we knew what we had when we had it and elating in what we have now, or what we'll have next, or maybe where we might be when the leaves are green again.

And all the while, against a backdrop of tawny-colored leaves and chilly early sunsets and school bells and bus stops and harvest moons, a little sliver of life returns. It's a thread that hasn't been there in months if you're lucky, years if you aren't, and it weaves through the tapestry of autumn a sense of everything-ness. A sense of possibility brought on by the symbolic change, a battling sense of comfort and daring brought on by the physical ones. A sense of connectedness to a whole world that you've seen all your life and yet have never seen before. It's a live wire, that thread, electrifying all it touches and finally igniting something that lies within, something that lies dormant until given just the right amount of spark to help it start a fire.

Comments

  1. You make fall sound so fun, yet inspiring too.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Here's to new yet familiar experiences!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow. You are an amazingly talented writer, friend. The way you string your words together is boggling my mind right now. If o wrote a fall post it would go something like this: Scarves! Boots! No more humidity! lol :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. LEAVES! :)

    A love story about fall... and I'm smitten!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Beautiful!!! Fall is my favorite time of year for everything that you mentioned above and so much more. Also, I really need to go get a leaves candle!!!! I couldn't be bothered with summer scents this spring and summer...I have been burning toasted marshmallow this whole time! But leaves is my absolute favorite!

    ReplyDelete
  6. beautifully written <3 makes me want to love fall ;)

    ReplyDelete
  7. <3 Love getting to read a sample of your creative writing. Hope you enjoy the first weekend of this gorgeous season!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Ah, you make fall sound so beautiful, and the candle picture makes me a tiny bit excited for fall. Though truth be told I hate cold weather and that's what happens when fall rolls around :(

    ReplyDelete
  9. I already love fall and I honestly didn't think that it was possible to love it any more, at least that is what I thought until I read this post! I am so over summer (as shocked as I am to say that). I cannot wait to see more leaves turn and feel the chill of the cooler weather.

    ReplyDelete
  10. This just makes me want fall even more! Excellently written.
    I love seasons and the process of renewal each year, which is really the only reason I tolerate summer. :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Reading this was like seeing the landscape in my mind-- so good!

    ReplyDelete
  12. This is beautiful friend! My September was terrible but positivity for October.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear from you. Please make sure your settings let me reply to your comment by email.