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Posts Tagged ‘autumn’

On this rainy, indoor day, I’m sharing photographs from recent walks. I have been so surprised lately by how much is blooming late in the season. Look at the color of those roses and the vitality of the daisies! I want to get some autumn daisies for my own yard.

As you may have guessed, the flower basket at the street crossing memorializes a death on that spot. The woman who was hit was devoted to nature, so her friends have not been putting anything plastic up. Yesterday I noticed a small pile of smooth stones such as one sees in Japanese gardens.

The next shot, of an old tree stump, was taken on a trail that branches off from our local cemetery. I often walk in the cemetery because it is so beautifully landscaped, but I had never taken this path along the wetlands because it’s usually too swampy. I enjoyed trying to guess where the trail would emerge and I was almost right.

I was also drawn to a tree stump by a stone wall on the Codman House grounds in Lincoln, Massachusetts. Sometimes there is beauty in decay. Some might regard the old formal gardens with the ionic columns as representing a different kind of decay, although I must say, the statue looks pretty alert and energetic to me.

The farmstand and a homeowner’s gourd-and-pumpkin display speak for themselves. They remind me I should add a bag of candy to my delivery order on the off-chance we actually get a trick-or-treater this year. It’s been years. But a toddler just moved in next door, so I have hopes. Maybe his mother would prefer something other than candy though. What do you suggest?

Next I have two of the pieces of art from this year’s Umbrella Art Ramble in the town forest. I liked the hanging rowboats and the fishnet strung between trees. The theme this year was “Water Change: Where Spirit, Nature, and Civilization Meet.” Some works spoke to the different ways we use water. Some spoke to increasing shortages. In our own town, we have been suffering from a drought, so the pieces were especially relevant.

Finally, beautiful clouds. I don’t need to tell anyone here that some of the best art is not of human device.

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I’m old enough to have lived through many contentious election cycles, my mother having gotten my help going door-to-door when I was 7. So I’m here to tell you, life goes on. The old world keeps turning. The seasons come around. Dawn lights up city streets. Those who seek kindness and beauty find it.

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In spite of the drought, Massachusetts trees displayed some of their best colors this year. I’m sharing one photo taken along the Concord River, another that barely does justice to this month’s reds and golds, and a third that intrigued me because the green leaves were pink only on their tips.

Other photographic offerings include a name shadow at Bondir restaurant, where we had lunch today, a pirate skeleton with his skeletal parrot in a Lowell bookshop/café, lovely plants in the café, an artist working en plein air, shadows of ivy trying to break into the house, and four book-themed scarecrows at the public library.

The first scarecrow was inspired by the book Strega Nona, the second by If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. The third scarecrow promotes the library’s seed catalog, and the fourth celebrates the counting books.

Don’t you wonder how the library came to do all that work? There must be 20 scarecrows altogether. I’m trying to picture the meeting where the boss says, “We’re doing scarecrows for Halloween. Who volunteers to do what?” Or maybe it was more spontaneous. It sure looks like people had fun with it.

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Nice to run into Judith and Paul at the annual downtown farmers market. We always talk shop a little because we worked together in the ’90s. I was interested to hear she is back doing writing for our former colleague Kate, currently a principal at leadership consultancy SweetmanCragun.

Now about these pictures: Main Streets Café is always creative with their seasonal displays. I don’t know that I would think of lining up pumpkins under a bench. The squashes are from Hutchins Farm. First Root Farm’s display includes radishes, beets, and carrots. The chrysanthemums and asters were tempting, but the car was parked too far away for me to carry a big plant.

Finally, please note the funny vehicles the kids are racing. I include a close-up of several late-model vegetable cars. (Pick a squash; add wheels.)

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A time of year to get creative with squashes, visit a farmers market, kayak on a river, roof the barn.

Get it all in before winter. Only the wooly bear knows for sure how long the winter will be.

Photo of farmers market: Sandra M. Kelly
Other photos: Suzanne’s Mom

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This is the time of year for walnut trees to bear fruit, for bees to bring in the last of the wine, and for block parties. Beacon Hill’s party is way more elaborate than any block party in Concord and is considered a time to raise funds for a cause. See if you can guess which party is which.

Orchard
by H. D.

I saw the first pear
as it fell—
the honey-seeking, golden-banded,
the yellow swarm
was not more fleet than I,
(spare us from loveliness)
and I fell prostrate
crying:
you have flayed us
with your blossoms,
spare us the beauty
of fruit-trees.

The honey-seeking
paused not,
the air thundered their song,
and I alone was prostrate.

O rough-hewn
god of the orchard,
I bring you an offering—
do you, alone unbeautiful,
son of the god,
spare us from loveliness:

these fallen hazel-nuts,
stripped late of their green sheaths,
grapes, red-purple,
their berries
dripping with wine,
pomegranates already broken,
and shrunken figs
and quinces untouched,
I bring you as offering.

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