Therefore all seasons shall be sweet to thee,
Whether summer clothe the general earth
With greeness, or the redbreast sit and sing
Betwixt the tufts of snow on the bare branch
Of mossy apple-tree, while the nigh thatch
Smokes in the sun-thaw; whether the eave-drops fall
Heard only in the trances of the blast,
Or if the secret ministry of frost
Shall hang them up in silent icicles,
Quietly shining to the quiet Moon.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

The Autumn Equinox

Today is the Autumn Equinox when the hours of  darkness and daylight are equal. This is a time of ripening fruits, berries, nuts and seeds which hold the promise of new life when  Spring comes round again. They also hold the promise of continuing life for the birds and animals who depend on them for food during the long, hard months of winter.

I love both of the illustrations that I've used in this post, the one above is by Angela Jayne Barnett and is just perfect for this month. September brings the completion of the harvest season when all the crops are safely gathered in and in days gone by this was celebrated by all those who worked on the land - a rather more robust celebration than the feeble shadow that passes for harvest festival nowadays! Although I confess that I have always loved the rousing harvest hymn 'Come, Ye Thankful People, Come' - largely because of the music that it is sung to:)

Come, ye thankful people, come
raise the song of harvest home,
All is safely gathered in
ere the winter storms begin

From today we begin the long, slow (we hope!) descent into winter as the days grow shorter and the nights grow longer. Already the bracken is turning brown and the first  red, yellow and bronze leaves are appearing as the trees begin to withdraw the energy into their roots ready for the long winter's sleep. The circle is turning again as we move into this lovely season.


Roy Norris said...

With this 'Mast Year' I think the birds and animals will do very well this Winter D.
Yes they are lovely scenes the second one in particular and I do like you last 'Topical' shot with the ferns.

Mac n' Janet said...

I have been looking forward to Autumn all summer. It is in the lower 80's, mostly, and the nights are getting cooler. The trees won't lose their leaves for a while and the live oaks won't lose them at at. Autumn is rather pretty here.

JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...

I am definitely not a fan of autumn - never have been - but I am trying to redirect my thinking and this post really did help - I shall continue trying.

*Sheila* said...

Autumn is my favourite season, and it officially begins here today at 4.44pm EDT. The leaves are beginning to change, and I look forward to cooler days, and the colourful foliage that accompanies them.

Nella Miller said...

Hi Rowan, I love the beautiful September illustration...the stag..lovely! Yes, this is my very favourite time of year...we live in wine country and our harvest is in full swing...I am so grateful to be able to see, smell and savour all of the bounty...enjoy this lovely season, N.xo

Rosie said...

I remember singing that hymn at school for harvest festival time - I too hope we have a slow and gentle descent into winter:)

Patricia said...

Yes the evenings are definitely drawing in now Rowan and I must admit that I'd forgotten it was this weekend that Autumn officially began. Our walk this afternoon was beautiful, the sun was shining but in the wooded areas and the hedgerows there was a great sense of winding down towards winter. The golden brown leaves beginning to fall from the trees and the acorns strewn along the pathways. But I love it.
Patricia x

Angela Bell said...

Rowan that is a lovely post. The seasons are so wonderful I cannot imagin living in the Amazon where it stays the same. The rythm is so important!x