There is a time around the middle of November when the natural world seems to fold in quietly upon itself as if to prepare for hibernation. The glorious, blazing colors of Autumn have begun to fade and the winter snows have not yet covered the ground. Landscapes of various shades of brown meet our eyes and gray, blanketing clouds cover the skies. All seems to be preparing for winter’s long rest.
As a child, it was the time of the year I enjoyed the least (except for the Februwearies), but as an adult, it is one of those quiet times I have learned to love. This is because everywhere I look, nature shows me how to slow down, be still and find peace in my busy, stressful life.
Yes, there are storm-tossed days when the wind tears at your hair and jacket and the cold rains, sometimes mixed with snow, dance on your face. Leaves “scatter like before the wild hurricane flies” and you will see humanity braving the winds and rains as they rush along the sidewalks or to their cars.
But more often than not, the days are calm with a pale Autumn sunshine and hazy clouds. Leaves curl up on a tree like a child curled under blankets, the bright sun gives way sooner to the calming night, even the overflowing streams of spring and summer slow down to a trickle.
Nature seems to call one to reflection, to ponder the year slipping away and what is to come. In the stillness of an Autumn twilight, if one is very quiet, one can feel that whisper of nature that tells you it’s time to slow down and reflect.
Ssshhhh…can you hear it?