The sun rises later now, making it easier to get up early enough to experience the sunrise without compromising sleep. This morning’s sunrise was heavy with fog, although the surface of the river was clear, with no mist rising from it. The air was also thick with a pervasive sense of calm, which wrapped around me like a soft blanket. I thought it would be a good time to take the kayak out, but after I returned from gathering my gear, I noticed the view of the shoreline was disappearing gradually as thick fog descended.
Lagging behind the other trees, the oaks began releasing their leaves today in earnest. A hurricane is making its way up the coast, and it’s as if the trees have counseled the leaves to let go on their own terms rather than wait for a thief to come along and steal them away in a fury.
There is a parade of mostly oak leaves floating downriver as if on a conveyor belt. The freshly fallen leaves speak of total surrender to the flow of life.
After the fog had lifted, I went on the river eager to photograph the fall foliage for what might be the last time this year. I was drawn to the image of oak leaves falling, landing on the water, and drifting away from the reflection of the tree to which they used to cling. There is a metaphor in that image that has intrigued me for the past couple years. The reflection seems like a memory of a lifetime completed.
Some oak leaves travel in groups held together by an invisible force of some sort. I saw the movie, Cloud Atlas, last night and couldn’t help but perceive the groups of floating oak leaves as having recently ended one existence together and traveling toward a new one.
Several skeins of geese have been flying overhead today. Some honk loudly. Others fly so silently that I can hear the whistling of their wings beating in unison. The sound reminds me of the squeaking of old playground equipment.
The heron is a master of invisibility. He continues to surprise me when he takes off all of a sudden to find a more private location.
The water was calm, producing vivid reflections.
As I write, it is so quiet. The air remains heavy with moisture and stillness like the calm before the storm.
Aside from the oaks, there seem to be more leaves on the ground now than on the trees.
In the yard, the sole, large pumpkin cut from our lengthy vine is working on turning orange. Numerous cauliflower plants seemed to have come alive and are busy growing. The Brussels sprouts are still growing. Some spearmint plants remain, and I am fond of plucking the leaves to make a thermos of hot tea to take along for the kayak or the classroom. The broccoli hasn’t given up yet, and the scallions continue to thrive.
Heading indoors, it is time to turn my attention toward charging batteries, doing dishes and laundry, and preparing food for blustery weather.
Be safe, my East coast friends!
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