|O WORLD, I cannot hold thee close enough!|
|Thy winds, thy wide grey skies!|
|Thy mists that roll and rise!|
|Thy woods, this autumn day, that ache and sag|
|And all but cry with colour! That gaunt crag|
|To crush! To lift the lean of that black bluff!|
|World, World, I cannot get thee close enough!|
|Long have I known a glory in it all,|
|But never knew I this;|
|Here such a passion is|
|As stretcheth me apart. Lord, I do fear|
|Thou’st made the world too beautiful this year.|
|My soul is all but out of me,—let fall|
|No burning leaf; prithee, let no bird call.|
–Edna St. Vincent Millay
I contend that autumn is the prettiest season in the Midwest.
The blossoming trees in spring are lovely, yes. And it’s hard to beat the glittering new snow under streetlamps in winter. But the color of fall trees under windy grey skies is magical.
Over the last few weekends, a friend and I took day trips to see the fall colors around Chicago.
The next weekend, we went to the Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Ill., to see how the trees were changing color and to pick some fallen leaves (which I later made into a centerpiece).
Finally, we went to South Bend, Ind., and walked the campus of Notre Dame University and along the St. Joseph River. I had my camera at hand and you can see some of my photos here.
In every place, we saw breathtaking landscapes and color. Maybe I am getting old and sentimental, but I felt overwhelmed by how beautiful everything was. Add that to hot apple cider and cozy sweaters and it makes autumn my favorite season!
Mostly I am filled with gratitude: God has given us a wonder-full, magical world. We can feel blessings fall around us like orange and yellow leaves. These days set the tone for Thanksgiving next week.
It makes me grateful to be able to experience this good earth for one more autumn, even as I feel sad at the shortening daylight in November.
How about you? Do you have a favorite season? Why does it speak to your heart?
Kate Elliott is editor of Gather.