Even though the year flows continuously through its seasonal changes, it is spring and autumn that I think of as the months of transition. Everything seems to shift and the feeling of settling and drawing inwards that autumn brings is as pronounced as the bright uprising and awakening that we sense in spring.
Who could fail to love the fierce brightness of autumn leaves?
Yet as autumn progresses and the branches become increasingly bare, it is the softness of the landscape that captivates me. The fields smudged in pastel hues, the full, soft blues and greys of the skies and the warm low light that all at once dampens the glare of the world, yet infuses that on which it falls with a subtle kind of vibrancy.
As autumn progresses to winter and nature appears to be sleeping, there is still flashes of life, young leaves enjoying a brief flush before their frozen slumber begins.
Nettles can be seen in all their life stages. Many have died already, others are grown tall, sparse and straggly and yet where they have been cut back, there is plenty of new growth to be seen, a last little reminder of what we can look forward to when the Earth wakes again.
Poets and artists often depict autumn and winter as a time of death, but to me they are merely times of passage, when the old is let go and the new remains contained for a time in its gestation.
When we learn to look closely, the sweet song of life is always humming underneath.