“Summer soft,

wakes you up with a kiss to start the morning off

In midst of herself playing Santa Claus

She brings gifts through her breeze

 

Morning rain

Gently plays her rhythm’s on your window pane

Giving you no clue of when she plans to change

bringing rain or sunshine

 

And so you wait to see what she’ll do

Is it sun or rain for you

But it breaks your heart in two

When you find it’s October

And she’s gone

And she’s gone

Summers’ gone

Taking with her Summer’s play…..”

Stevie Wonder (Songs in the Key of life, Summer soft)

A fantastic album, never dates even though it was made in the 1970s!!

 

The rapid change in seasons from Ete to l’automne has meant that I have found myself singing this song. We went from over thirty degrees  the Tuesday before last to an average of twenty degrees now (although as always with Autumn we have had some warm days thrown in for good measure.)

In the weeks leading up to the storm the trees had started to shed their leaves, it looked as if they were crying for the end of the season, there leaves slowly drifting down to earth, as if to say I don’t want summer to go, it’s been a good one.

Greek mythology tells us that the reason for the changes in season is because the goddess Persephone, daughter of  Demeter,goddess of agriculture, was abducted by Hades, the god of the underworld and forced to marry him. Demeter was so angry that Zeus had agreed to Hades having their daughter for his wife she refused to let the crops or plant life grow or thrive, and the crops started to shrivel and die. In the end a deal was struck and Persephone was allowed to spend six months on earth (Spring and Summer) and had to spend six months in the underworld (autumn and winter.)

Persephone is known as the Goddess of spring, as well as Queen of the underworld. So for those romantics out there this is what is happening, the trees are crying because Persephone has to return to the underworld, the flowers are dying because they feel that there is no-longer anything to rejoice and celebrate, and the beautiful colours of summer are fading because they are sad at her departure.

But all is not lost. I rejoice at the colours that autumn brings, the blaze of orange, yellow, russet, and gold dotted with the bright red from berries that will give sustenance to animals in the winter. Some may remember my post last year about our first autumn here, when I wrote about magical fairy kingdoms, they looked as if little lights would come on at night from the “little people” (homage to my Irish readers) that may live in them.

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I am waiting for my little fairy kingdoms to sprout again, and this time I won’t let Rich strim them!!!!

I wake up every morning to mists across the fields surrounding our house, and find myself saying “tis the season of ‘mists and mellow fruitfulness’ from the Keats poem Ode to Autumn,  to the dogs (who are very well schooled I’ll have you know). I love the way that the seasons and changes are so evident here.

This year, thanks to d’orage (the storm) our poor walnut tree is shedding branches rather than walnuts. It was damaged much more than we realised and there are many large branches that are broken and hanging at the top of the tree. We have to be careful walking underneath, although the walnuts used to be pretty deadly on their own, as one of our dear friends found out when one just missed his head! But now in addition to the walnut you may just get the whole branch, I must invite him over!

In the first picture below you can see the most recent branch that has fallen – you wouldn’t want that  landing on your head from a great height!  And  if  you look closely at the second picture below you can see one of the large, dead branches precariously balanced at the top of the tree waiting to drop.

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So at today is the autumn equinox, we will get the exact same amount of daylight as darkness, and then that’s it, the nights really will start drawing in, and I thought that it was apt that I posted this blog today.

Me? I’m going to embrace it all, every minute of life, whatever the weather. I’m taking the Welshies for a walk by the river this evening to take a look at the changing colours, I will watch the eagles swoop over the lane where we live, and next week Rich and I will have some bonfires (one way to keep warm without costing any money!) God knows we have enough to burn!

Anyone want to join us, perhaps we can cook some jacket spuds the traditional way in a real fire,  with a glass of red of course!!

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Thanks in advance.

Moisy