The Twelfth of October
Today truly is the end of summer. I mow the now greening lawn,
noticing that my pink dahlia was frosted last night, and its leaves are black.
I pick the apples from my tree, filling two more buckets than last year, and
I feel the cold kiss of the coming night, instead of the lingering heat of the day.
Making a stew, and the cooking of that dish is a sign in itself, I go outside to the tomato patch to pick some vine ripened tomatoes to add a special flavor, and notice the tomato vine is now all but bare, and the two tiny tomatoes left are all that’s left of the vine. The end of an age, or at least a season.
Its nearly dark, but not even six o’clock yet, and I really should put on a sweatshirt, but my shivery arms resist, wanting to soak up some more summer sun and heat, just one more day, please. Yet, I’m cold. I admit it. But, not enough of an admission to warrant finding my sweatshirt. Didn’t I last wear that on a summer camping trip, or for a walk on the beach? Soon, it will be a daily essential of my routine.
The calendar says October, and the serious fall rains are really past due. My wife’s compost pile grows from the cleaning and harvesting of her garden, and the green and gray striped caterpillars on the fennel pose politely for their picture, before I leave the garden for the fall.
The cats come in earlier than late summer, wanting the warmth of the house, and no longer dally on the warm deck next to the begonias, which are now dropping their flowers and their leaves turning yellow, and the warm deck feel is simply a memory.
Its time to go stir the stew, perhaps pour a glass of wine, and get on with this fall thing, putting the summer behind me now. My fingers still remember the feel of the apples, and how the bigger ones felt warm as I pulled them from the tree and plopped them in the bucket. Soon, it will be pie time, and my hours of tending the tree just so these last six months will be rewarded, finally.