The First Hint of Autumn


autumnI felt it today. It whispered to me on the edge of the morning air as I stepped outside on my way to college. I wanted to stop, to feel it more fully. To watch the sun, which tinged the sky in pink and purple, fill the horizon with gold. But I needed to get to college … to my first class of the day. So I rolled down the window and the feeling mingled with the music from the radio.

The first hint of autumn is in the air.

I saw it last week, as I walked from one class to another. It fell silently to the ground in front of me. A dry, dead, brown leaf. It was beautiful. I wanted to stop. To pick it up. To feel it more fully. I wanted to write about it. But I was rushing to my next class and couldn’t stop.

But I saw it there again today. With friends. Leaves brown and crisp gathered at the base of the chain-link fence. On the sidewalk at my feet. On the railroad tracks where they would be ushered again into the air with the warm smoke of the next engine to come by, or the rush of the cars on the tracks.

By midday it had disappeared – that hint of fall in the air – and I felt I had lost something. The feeling that, when you don’t write or think or dream or pray that moment, you’ve missed something and it will never come out quite the same again. And all day I felt like I was trying to catch up with something that I had forgotten or left behind.

But maybe tomorrow morning it will be there again. That whispering magic of autumn that traces every bit of nature. The golden air and sky drifting down to the leaves and glinting first the edges with gold. Then the colors spring from nowhere and are everywhere. Red. Yellow. Orange. Brown. And gold.

The sigh of summer passes and I take a breath, breathing in anticipation, excitement, wonder. The coming season, like a song, wakens something in the soul and it opens its eyes knowing that wonder waits around the bend.

I felt it today. The first hint of autumn … when awe and adventure seek to write themselves into the pages of every day.

September has scarcely begun, but I pray I will have time … will make time … to stop, to listen, to feel, to write, and to thank the Giver of life and love, of seeing and feeling, of every season.

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