"Autumn... the year's last, loveliest smile." ~ William Cullen Bryant
"She looked like autumn, when leaves turned and fruit ripened." ~ Sarah Addison Allen
“That country where it is always turning late in the year. That country where the hills are fog and the rivers are mist; where noons go quickly, dusks and twilights linger, and midnights stay. That country composed in the main of cellars, sub-cellars, coal-bins, closets, attics, and pantries faced away from the sun. That country whose people are autumn people, thinking only autumn thoughts. Whose people passing at night on the empty walks sound like rain.”
~ Ray Bradbury
I was enamored, this past November (like it usually happens), with the stark, chill, wild of the late autumnal world - all brown, snapping twigs, swirling paper leaves, true blue skies and low, wispy white puffs of clouds scudding past. It's such a fresh and simple world! This is the season when the pines come into their own. All of the other trees, having abandoned their frondescence, become very demure - being caught in only their lacy skeletons, while the pines, a deep, velvety green - wild, courtly and solitary - restlessly rustle the shadowy layers of their lush skirts.
Outside, everything was brisk and quiet - only the wind to fill one's ears with conversational company. Inside, everything was warm and quiet - except for the snapping of the logs in the fire, the snore of the dog and the ticking of the clock - and the wind - still always there - now howling and rattling and whispering at the edge of the windows.
And, then, there was the light - the low slant of the pale sunshine floating very, very slowly and quietly through the windows - the premature setting of the sun and the dark shadows in the corners of what should have been our afternoon rooms....
So, this is what I explored with my photos - the wild world outside and the comfort of the autumnal warmth that we make for ourselves, inside. Alas, sheer exhaustion has kept me from sharing them until now, at the cusp of the winter solstice - the last day of autumn - the ridiculously absolute deadline. Then, again, the tiredness and struggle with my health was what drove me to stay close and to focus, once again, quietly, on my family and home!! Such wonderful times and memories squirreled and stored away!!
"At night, when the curtains are drawn and the fire flickers, my books attain a collective dignity."
~ E.M. Forster
"I saw old autumn in the misty morn stand shadowless like silence, listening to silence...."
~ Thomas Hood
"Listen! The wind is rising and the air is wild with leaves,
We have had our summer evenings, now for october eves!"
~ Humbert Wolfe
"One may have a blazing hearth in one's soul and yet no one ever came to sit by it. Passers-by see only a wisp of smoke from the chimney and continue on their way."
~Vincent Van Gogh
"...but I do feel a little teeny right now that I'm just about ready to start, and winter is entering. Half past autumn has arrived."
The truth is... now, we're snowed in! ;)
Wishing you joy in the seasons, here, at the winter solstice - a sort of turning of the tide!
* Pumpkin, Bacon and Sage Soup
(scroll down the linked page to the recipe. It's really delicious and smells like pure heaven when also simmering on the stove with....)
* Hot Buttered Rum
(It will seriously warm you to your toes!)