Autumn can be an incredibly potent time. Every year I write a love note to the autumn.
Dear Sweet Autumn,
Today is your birthday: the equinox. I love you so very much. In fact, I blushingly admit: I adore you.
The ecstasy of breezes blowing through the bamboo chimes, shifting light, sunsets that pale in comparison to fire-bearing leaves, the smell of wood smoke in the cooling air, evening windows bathed with the yellow glow of family love. Call me a romantic. Silly. Frivolous, even. But when the sun rises later and later, and the dusty jackets of last winter are called to the coat rack near the door, I begin to feel the thrill of your arrival. I do not mourn the passing of summer; I relish watching you slowly make your way here.
Your beauty and brilliance captivate me. Your steady patience and reliable return each year soothe me. I love your ability to hold a wide open quiet space within—to guide me there, even as the winds rise up loud and strong, the rains begin to rip through the trees in torrents that send the cedar boughs flying. The vast and stunning inner landscape views open up: wide, sweeping, diverse, rich internal geographies.
You, my Dearest Fall, work your magic on me in inexplicable ways. And you have always done this for me. I have written reveries about your arrival when I was a little girl:
One dark wet night late in my fourth October, my tiny hands grasped the windowsill and my nose—pressed against the pane—watched dancing twinkles of raindrops, lit up a royal blue. I fell in love with you in that moment, Autumn. The next day you had scattered some liquidambar leaves that recited crispy poetry under my baby shoes as I walked to kindergarten in a love-struck daze.
Ever since, living in places wet or dry, distinctly marked by seasons or not, you have guided me, held a spacious nest of inspiration, and given me gifts extraordinary with your annual return.
Your birthday is my gift. How blessed I am! My present to you is my promise, my deep abiding commitment, to be attentive to your glories each time you return. To use the gift of your passionate embrace to root my own work deeper in the world: writing, creating beauty, honoring the opportunity for quiet solitude, being present with my people—those I’m called to serve. I will express my gratitude for all things Nature, all things Awe, all things Beautiful, or Edgy, or Unsure. Because, Dear Fall, you inspire me so! I embrace you with all the love in my heart.
I celebrate this day, your birthday-equinox, with excitement and in deep respect. My delight in you is boundless, though this letter is not.
I love, love, love, love, love you, Autumn!
With abiding gratitude for the countless gifts you bring year after year,
Your Adoring Human
(Originally posted on 23 Sept 2016)
All blog images created & photographed by Jennifer J. Wilhoit unless otherwise noted. Please circulate images with photo credit: "©2018 JenniferJWilhoit/TEALarbor stories. AllRightsReserved."