*Nainika’s Note* An ode to the seasons, this one is. And in Yoda speak I will, until out of my brain, thoughts of the Mandalorian make their way. An autumn baby I am and exists, favoritism does. Jumbled, this story is, strange it is indeed, but enjoy, this story, enjoy. :)
In the spring, the flowers push their way through the thawing soil, greeting the sun for the first time all winter. Springtime never waits for the perfect ice-free day yet pushes forth at the first chance for the warming light of day.
Here we are with the wildflowers rising from the Earth, looking to the casual eye as weeds until they bloom. Who pays attention to their chaotic stems that twist in the joy of new life until they wear colors as bold as any festival diva? Then there they are in the air that becomes more welcoming each day, a community of colors, a feast for butterflies and bees.
From the mud come flowers as golden as sunshine, as fluid as rain. They arrive at first in ones and twos, yet soon they are the most buoyant of crowds, happily dancing in the wind.
No more the bare wands that told of winter's magic, here come the green flags, the parade of spring in bright bloom. The chorus of the skies has called forth the promise of the Earth and sunshine combined. These weeks will be as a developing photograph - the colors deepening with the richness of the season. The rain will wash warmer over each face, a freshness to open each budding smile.
There is a playfulness in nature, in the skies, woodland, and soil. The time of plenty is coming, and the joy of coming abundance energizes the air. In rain or shine, there is a new warmth, inviting the lips to smile. The greenness of the grass is soon to be echoed by the trees, while the flowers promise their rainbow garland to our Earth.
The early morning sunlight, soft and diffuse, gives way to the first strong rays of the day, the ones that bring true warmth. In this light, water evaporates in slow waves, waves that eddy in the gentle breeze, flowing upward to white-puffed clouds, ships of white in the blue above. The opera from the trees becomes all the more powerful as if these golden rays are their conductor's wand, and together they are the song that calls forth the spring.
The spring washes in like the tide, advancing confidently with warmth and white sunshine one day and retreating the next. On some days, the new vibrant hues of the pansies and daffodils are bathed in tepid air that encourages them gently; on others wintry winds gusts fiercely - demanding a return to the bitterness of the months before. But like the tide, the spring will not be stopped, banishing the chill to memory.
The previously denuded branches offered their wands of tight green bud to the brilliant rays of spring. The wind has lost its bite. It has become ambient, congenial, blowing branches and tousling pedestrian's hair - but no longer stealing their warmth. From the gardens wave the precocious yellow bloom of the daffodils. The only clouds are fluffy, white, and quite dispersed.
There are years in which old man winter refuses to give up without a fight. Yet Spring will ride in on a gentle breeze, unhindered by any hill. This air will soothe the embattled flora with its sweet promise of the warmth to come, only to be pushed back by bitter gales and hail. But spring is patient, always returning in the calm between each storm and each time expanding until it has ebbed out the frigid blasts entirely. Some days can still be a blanket of cloud as the season passes, but mostly they are sporadic and sparse - allowing the brilliant light to strike the fields unhindered. Soon the fields are not brown at all, but swathes of waving green.
Summer comes fast like music turned up to full volume. Summer arrives as a carnival parade, as the flamboyant sister taking center stage, showering kisses upon her more reserved sister-spring. Once the warm-up act for summer has given her final tune, the blossoms come full-pride beneath a strong and brilliant sun. Of what springtime sang in melodic serenity, the summer turns up to full volume and adds her own sweet, sweet beat. And as the plants of springtime take to the gallery, those of the summertime bathe in the full theatrical spotlight.
The summer season heightens every hue, bringing the watercolor spring to a fresh pop-art vibe. The summer season radiates rainbow and immortal hues, bathed in floral aroma, soaked in pure sun-rays. A newly radiant sun steps forth from the springtime, wrapping all in her warm and brilliant rays. The sky blazes blue, and the sun is a celebration of yellow, free and bright. The trees rise to the occasion, donning their best verdant hues, and everywhere are the flowers, the scattered rainbow that they are.
The flowers are a new masterpiece each day, changing the frameless scenery, gazing upward at the ever-present sky; they are the warmth of the land that give thanks to the warmth of the summer sun. They are the rainbow that arises from the Earth and water, yet can be nothing without those golden rays. Each day of these playful months will come in moments, the gift of the present, lived in barefoot dances, wind-tousled hair, laughter, and song, the layers of winter left behind in some forgotten closet.
The birdsong drifts as well as any summertime pollen. It comes as magical as any flute, as improvised as deep south jazz, and as soulful as love's kiss. Summer flowers come to the land as if a rainbow had become rain, then remain as a vivid radiance for all of those warm days. They come as if they are the radiant dreams of Earth conjured into bold reality.
In late summer the grass moves in steady waves, those long heads of golden seed as calming as harbor waves. There is something about it, their movement synchronized yet independent, their hues so close yet unique. And while they dance in that way, up comes the song of crickets and the chirps of birds content to be warmed by gentle rays. In late summer the Earth is ready for the rains, for sweet drops to quench the soils. It is then that the pitter-patter returns to the woodlands, simple water to bring nature's magic. The pathways strengthen from a dusty brown to deep mahogany, reviving a healthy glow. Summer foliage has its time, the green canopy to give shelter when it's needed, yet this is beauty also, the heaven-given promise seasonal changes fulfilled. When the berries - red, blue, cream, and black - adorn the leaf-blossomed trees, in those precious days while the late summer blooms still sing in vibrant hues, I sense the changing of the season with a steady and warm heart.
Summer has not envied autumnal hues, nor are these seasonal sisters ever rivals, yet complementary to one another, a melody that flows from warmer notes to cool at the hands of a divine conductor. And as summertime nods her sleepy head, the autumnal blooms come to sweeten her dreams. The summertime that took her throne a few short months ago now welcomes her sister to take her place, the rainbow dress of petals ushered to her slumber whilst the gown of brilliant berries at late blooms ascends.
The berries come to the autumnal air as the blooms come to the spring, in a triumphant hurrah of color. Autumn is the time of hugs, of evenings with warm drinks and warmer smiles. Autumn has dressed herself for the coming season, donning her most vibrant hues. She has swept into our streets and woodlands with a humble boldness that invites the eye to see more than they otherwise might. The autumn takes her pirouette, her sweet turn on the stage all around, and we are so blessed to be given such beauty.
And so the autumn arrives with a buoyant lack of subtlety, and how I love it so. For sure there are the browns that come as a comforting quilt to the earth, yet the rest are the hues of volcanoes, of firework sparks, and festival hoopla. It is as if nature is calling out to the spring and the trees can't help but become like flowers, towering blossoms of flamed foliage to dance into the skies before tumbling as giant confetti to the sidewalks and verges. The trees are laughing once more, dressed in their carnival clothes, the gold, and scarlet of the autumn days. They play about the earthy hues of the branch and trunk, proud flags in any sky. As they do I muse about the freshly calm air with that hint of an earthly aroma, the fragrance of homeliness.
The green flags of the trees become sepia-toned, waving in the southerly wind. Within the multitude of soft chocolatey browns there is gold shining through, and a blush that brings summer fruits to mind. The flamboyant colors of the summer flowers below are soon echoed by the foliage above. It is a second chance to bloom, for the green to glow with new hues as pretty as any petal. It is the promise of the most beautiful rain, the warmest of snowflakes, golds, and berry-reds under glossy water, sparkling under morning frost. It is those days before nature stands devoid of adornments and is breathtakingly beautiful just the same.
The autumn is our garland, the grand finale of a successful season. It is the parade we cherish, a grand dance of the foliage that came to brighten our days. It is the time of seeds bequeathed to the soils, of that which takes flight from branch to earth to become new earth itself. It is the gift of the old to the new, supporting, enriching, bringing health as is the natural way of life. The leaves dance from branch to ground, each a colorful flag without strings or pole, free to roam. I feel the breeze, rich with the aroma of the earth, the keeper of the seeds for the springtime to come. There is a calmness, as if all the gold, berry-reds, and browns that flutter about are a cozy quilt, bringing us the same peace as the nighttime. It is the time I once again see how the trees are clad in the many hues of the soil, see how their bark is their fingerprint, speaking to us of beauty in their silent way.
If a hurricane could meet a rainbow, if it could be calmed by the sweetness of a summer choosing to rest her vibrant song, that would be autumn to me. It is when the vibrant overture of life begins to signal peace and calm. In my youth I thought it was a time to learn patience, to see the coming of winter, and let days pass until the spring, no longer. Every season is a season of beauty, every day is something to savor, treasured for what it brings. Adversity is a chance to shine, to rise to challenge; abundance is a chance for joy and rest. So each of these days, as I embrace "what is" and seek ways to bring forth the goodness that "what could be," I feel more of the rainbow and less of the hurricane, and am thankful for blessed rain and sunshine alike.
The goodness of the autumnal foliage and berry comes to the winter cradle, asking this icy queen to return them to their mother, Earth. As autumn becomes the wintertime I gaze toward the sky, my soul expecting to see a blue sun as if the rays would somehow be colder in those icy days. Instead, they are of course, still golden, divinely warm upon my chilled skin. And in that light, the carpet of leaves becomes a sort of natural bling, as if Earth had declared herself queen and found the confidence to wear such God-given jewels.
Autumn leaves and green grass are cloaked in the first kiss of winter's frosts. The start of winter comes as Autumn takes her last spin and we settle in for the slow dance and for the evening to draw in. The newest of the swans arise on the first breaths of winter's hymn. Winter has taken her first step upon her months-long journey. The winter sun brought out the purity of the heaven-given snow as if it were a blank page for our merriment, inviting the feet to play and the spirit to laugh.
The river appears still, yet she flows under the thinnest of ice, awaiting the gentle touch of the sun. Though the air bares only the coldness and the ground is frozen once more, they glitter with the gift of each nascent ray. It is as if something ensured there would be hope even on the deepest and most wintry of days, asking us to see the sparks that remain even when the world is frozen. And so I choose not to see the blanket of ice but the waters that remain deep and moving, ever onward to join the ocean in its slow yet sure way. Wintry trees stand as ballet dancers poised to show the world their grace, strength showing in how they remain so still in the seasonal gusts. Now that the leaves have fallen, they are so proud, as if their silvery-brown skin was their glory all along. I lift my head into the wind, eyes open for this softly lit day. Cold is good if you are warm inside, just the same as we love ice in the summertime.
Before the cold winds come to breathe our world anew, before snow makes our familiar streets a canvas for dreams, I see each sculpted flake with eyes at rest, the chaotic dance of billions uniting over the earth. These daydreams are my hearth-fire, bringing the hint of a newborn smile, one that lifts every part of what I am. I ask the icy wind to bring me to higher senses, to wake within that which rested in the easy summer days; for in these dreams are wintry puddles, silver-blue in the path, as if they were nascent moons born to shine.
The winter is such crystalline joy, those brilliant rays that show the uniqueness of every snowflake. It is the time of puddles that become transient skating rinks and for my thoughts to remain cozy within a woolen hat. It is the time when the sunniest of days are warm even when I can see my breath rise as pure vapor. It is the days of quiet poetry forming in my soul as if it calls to the spring flowers that will soon blossom. The wintry sun is the brightness of the day, taking center stage as the blooms of the summertime becomes a part of the soil. The sunshine and cold, the sparkle and the ice, somehow warm even when the north wind bites. There will be days I wish to stay in the warm, to observe from a duvet, fingers wrapped snugly around some cocoa... yet some days the winter takes my hand and shows me its beauty, that in truth, it is but the dawn of spring.
And as the end of the year draws to a close, beneath four feet of soil, I rest. My coffin is a box, four walls that hold me in. It always has been, and always will be. But even though it is like a room in the aspect that it has four walls and a roof, a room does not share the same possibilities of life that my coffin does. That might seem to be a paradox, but it makes sense that from death, life can exist. And even as the years pass and my tombstone weathers away, I will always be here for the changing of seasons. For the one thing that will remain constant for all eternity.