November … The Ghost of Autumn
I have been feeling slightly under the weather this week, nothing serious, just a head cold – I don’t think the weather has helped the situation much.
Grey, gunmetal skies … mists and fogs … have given the landscape an eerie quality, sounds have been deadened and figures loom out of nowhere.
So it has been this past week … the fields around have been hidden from us … the sound of cawing rooks the only indication of life – rare glimpses snatched out of the gloom.
"So dull and dark are the November days.
The lazy mist high up the evening curled,
And now the morn quite hides in smoke and haze;
The place we occupy seems all the world."
- John Clare, November
But then there are moments of beauty … early morning mists rising from the fields … adding a magical atmosphere to the landscape with a lavender streaked sky.
Trying to find beauty in the everyday gets harder …
the slow decay of the garden
And November goes,
With the last red berries
And the first white snows.
With night coming early,
And dawn coming late,
And ice in the bucket
And frost by the gate.
The fires burn
And the kettles sing,
And earth sinks to rest
Until next spring."
- Elizabeth Coatsworth
And then, briefly, the sun forces its way through the murk and we savour it … don boots and coats quickly… before it vanishes … relishing a walk with no drizzle and mist cloaking the views.
“Walked for half an hour in the garden. A fine rain was falling, and the landscape was that of autumn. The sky was hung with various shades of grey, and mists hovered about the distant mountains – a melancholy nature. The leaves were falling on all sides like the last illusions of youth under the tears of irremediable grief. A brood of chattering birds were chasing each other through the shrubberies, and playing games amongst the branches, like a knot of hiding schoolboys. Every landscape is, at it were, a state of the soul, and whoever penetrates into both is astonished to find how much likeness there is in each detail.” ~ Henri Frederic Amiel
And so it is with November – a month of rain, fog, mist and sunshine.