Archive for July 21st, 2009


There is a point, late in every summer, in which I wake up one morning and realize that the birds are no longer singing. 

This is the point at which I know that fall is on its’ way. 

I don’t really mind fall, not too awful much.  You still have good weather, for the most part — sunny, slightly cool days that sparkle.  When the trees begin to turn the light of day takes on a different quality, and in the shade the canopy of leaves glows.  You get a few Indian summer days in the bargain, too. 

What upsets me so is the knowledge of what follows fall. 

I don’t know if you remember the winter of 2008-09, but here in this neck of the woods we had a humdinger of an ice storm.  It took days to dig out.  It took weeks for everyone to get back on the power grid.  It took months to get downed trees cleared.  And truthfully, I think it beat every single one of us down, and we haven’t recovered yet.  (The economy hasn’t helped, either.)  For all of the excitement that something like that causes, the change in otherwise dreary routine, frankly I’d just rather have the routine. 

My seasonal depression begins, ever so slowly, right around the time I realize that the birds are no longer bada-binging, that they have ceased their predawn twittering in search of a little sumthin’-sumthin’.  I love spring precisely for its’ fecundity, for the way the world wipes away the death that comes with winter and starts all over again. 

It helps, too, that spring is warm and sunny.  The days get longer.  My sleep cycles regulate.  I quit noshing like a hibernating bear.  I start all over again, too.

I ride pretty high on all of that, all the way through the warm and humid days of summer, because I like those, too.  I can even suffer a few rainy days without so much as a blip on my radar.  But when the birds become silent, it’s a little deafening. 

Soon enough the air will be filled with the late afternoon hum of insects, cicadas, the sawing of which means back to school.  I’ll start to hear the squawk of bluejays defending food stores, and watch the bright yellow goldfinches feeding on my purple coneflowers.  And then the days will grow darker at both ends.  And then it will be cold. 


I try to find the joy in the change of the seasons, I really do.  How else do you appreciate things if you don’t see the differences? But having known what winter is, from past experience, means that I can file it away for future reference.  I don’t really think it’s necessary to repeat this every. single. year.  I get it already.  Once is really quite enough for me. 

Is it any wonder that my recurring fantasy involves a tropical beach somewhere nearer the equator? 


— Mox


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