All the leaves are brown

Posted by Dale Wilsey Jr. | Posted in , , , , , , , , , , | Posted on Sunday, October 02, 2011

"Autumn arrives in early morning, but spring at the close of a winter day."
~Elizabeth Bowen

It's been a long, stressful, busy and, most of all, wet month(s). On the surface, in Tunkhannock, everything seems back to normal since the flood. The roads are clean and clear of mud and people go about their normal business.

Look closer.

Brick's Market is "Closed until further notice". There's still a drooping barrier of caution tape strung across the parking lot of Gay's True Value. In small corners, I find caked mud. Stains of oil. Ghosts of the flood remain on stalks of corn and trees in pale shadows left by the water.

While driving around, I've felt I've been sailing. Waterfalls are still pouring down the side of Avery Mountain and the Susquehanna runs muddy and high along its banks. Route 92 was closed for a second time just last week.

The weather sways like an erratic pendulum taunting me with shining, beautiful days only to pull blankets of dark, miserable clouds across the sky dumping sheets of rain down over hills and across my face.

Leaves are beginning to change and fall, covering my lawn in speckles of reds and yellows. I find myself closing my window at night to keep the chill out and, in the morning, it's harder to leave the comfort of my blankets. Even the sun finds it hard to come out. I smell winter coming.

Jack, my niece's horse who stands quietly behind the weathered wood of the old barn, will grow thick with a winter coat. Snow will fall, clinging to the lashes around his dark eyes. His breath will billow out in gentle clouds around his snout.

Watch the trees grow naked. Feel the crisp retreat of another summer. Another year. Unpack the jackets and mittens and store away the memories created in the passing months. Pick pumpkins from the field and cut character into their face while you drown in cider. This is the winding down of time.

The deep slumber of the land is coming. The hollow winds of winter. Blank canvases of land lit by the moon and pinpoint stars.

Another year is just beyond the banks of snow to come. All is reborn when the last bits of ice melt away and hearts begin to beat faster.

"O, wind, if winter comes, can spring be far behind?"
~Percy Bysshe Shelley

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