Another Side of Autumn

Another Side of Autumn …

“The crickets felt it was their duty to warn everybody that summertime cannot last forever. Even on the most beautiful days in the whole year – the days when summer is changing into autumn – the crickets spread the rumour of sadness and change.”

― E.B. White, Charlotte’s Web


There is a melancholy that accompanies autumn; not a profound weeping or heart-wrenching anguish. It is not a sadness or even a sense of regret. It is something more delicate and fine-spun, like a deep sigh of resignation, of accepting loss. For some, the colors of autumn are a reward, a resplendent triumph over the stifling heat of summer. But, that is not true of me.

The sky blazes with bronze oak leaves and shimmering red vine maples. Aspens are resplendent in yellow, the color of sweet creamery butter. Sweetgum trees tantalize with a brazen performance—their leaves turning from green to gold to red-purple in what seems a matter of moments.

On my garden path cyclamen raise their heads; gentle pink and white blooms awakening from their slumber, knowing that soon the flowers of summer will wither and fade, and only the cyclamen will remain.

The familiar summer kiss of dew on the morning grass has been replaced by a light mist. It shrouds our existence, giving the morning sunlight a soft, hazy glow. The afternoon sun is still warm, but much lower in the sky.

Autumn is not one distinct aroma, but an interweave of many scents that tell me the new season is approaching. Apples are ripe on the trees. Low-hanging fruit has already been snatched by hungry deer; they leave half-eaten fruit on the lawn. Fading foliage wilts and falls to the ground. A slightly sour, but not unpleasant aroma comes from the leaves composting, decaying, and returning back to the earth.

All of these sensory touches possess a subtle beauty, but my heart does not gladden as it does in April; for all of their splendor, these sights, sounds, and aromas point to a world that is dying. How is it that as leaves perish, they experience a re-birth, the Phoenix rising from the embers? This is not triumph—it is decay, a winding-down towards death.

And that is the melancholy, the subtext. This last burst of glory occurs only because the end is not far; the end comes to all living things, including you and me. In the colors of autumn, we see our own mortality, and a beauty mixed with sadness that is never far away.


For more lovely work like ‘Another Side of Autumn’ by Linda, see her Author page.

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I love to cook and for decades have created recipes and shared them with friends. Several years ago I began to publish my recipes online, telling a story with each one. And that sparked a new interest--writing. I still cook, but writing has become another passion. There is so much beauty in this world--beauty in peace, love, and (sometimes) sadness. I hope to find the words to share this with all of you.

5 thoughts on “Another Side of Autumn

  • April 23, 2016 at 7:59 PM

    First off Linda, I want to extend a warm welcome to the site and look forward to reading more of your amazing work. This portrait of Autumn brought to life and death by your most colorful of palettes simply bedazzles this poet. I am breathless and I wander about, picking up the lifeless leaves and tossing them into the air hoping to revive them from their agonizing decay. You take your reader on a magical colorful journey of immense sadness of a seasons end. Yet the new hope that April brings, lifts the trampled, dying Fall back to rejuvenation and the circle of life commences once again. Thank you for sharing this most visual, stunning and brilliant work with us here, your fellow writers/poets.

  • April 24, 2016 at 3:12 AM

    Vincent, I am humbled by your words of praise. In fact, you comments are far more eloquent than my original verse. Thank you for the kindness and encouragement.

  • April 24, 2016 at 3:19 AM

    Welcome Linda, hope you enjoy the sharing here on the site. This piece is beautifully written and so emotive as to the changing season toward winter. I have a profound connection with the natural world and often write about the simple processes and changes at nature’s whim. Here you have so masterfully described the changes and winding down of life toward winter, and your words guide a mind with imagery to see what you see and feel the subtle changes each day. Great work and looking forward to reading more from you. Take care.

  • April 24, 2016 at 8:40 AM

    What a wonderful first post here at The Creative Exiles, Linda. You described Autumn (my favourite season) perfectly. Welcome, and I look forward to reading more of your creative writing.

  • October 15, 2016 at 1:56 AM

    Hi Linda. I know I read this lovely verse when you first wrote it, but I just realized I either forgot to comment or forgot to hit the button – I must have been so within your wonderful thoughts on autumn and got lost. Great work Linda.


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