Winter's chilly hand is plucking at the landscape now, stripping branches here and there, but it has not yet taken a firm and deathly grip. Autumn's brilliant colors have faded, replaced by swaths of antique brass, rust, burnt rose, honey and amber.
Sun does not ignite these colors but rather creates a warm glow, a testament to the season as it peacefully passes away.
Leaves are constantly fluttering to the earth in little groups, heaping up over the ground and leaving garlands draped across shrubs, outdoor furniture and garden ornaments.
I walk amongst them, kicking at crinkly piles in the woodland. We keep the lawn and the paths cleared, but otherwise the leaves lie where they fall. They will provide insulation to the plants through the winter, and then by spring most of them will have decayed, returning to earth to replenish and nourish the soil.
I am not sorrowful about winter. It is a season for rest and renewal. I feel its cold breath and I pull my sweater tighter, but we are fortunate. Our winter delivers enough days to complain about, but it is comparatively short and mild. I can continue to garden through the season, but our pansies, decorative cabbage and winter vegetables, such as collards and spinach, will probably come through the winter with little effort on my part.
Today is a beautiful, mild day. I take in deep breaths, enjoying the crisp air and the fragrance of earth, and I am grateful for all the wonders around me.
May you all have a great week!