September always makes me feel a bit sad. It is a time of endings. The end of summer in particular.
September is going back to school and although I liked school I liked the summer holidays more. As a mother I never prayed for September school to get rid of my children, I enjoyed the summer holidays with them. Most of the years I was self employed so I could have time with them. End of August sorting and buying uniform and new pencils I hated.
Autumn – Season of mist and mellow fruitfulness – sorry, couldn’t resist the quote. Autumn colours are wonderful but they don’t fill me with joy the way snowdrops or the first celandines and verges billowing cow parsley do. I am a March birthday, spring and summer are my seasons. It saddens me to see the chestnut trees turning brown in August.
On Facebook people are clamouring about Autumn, Hallowe’en and Christmas. Those seasons do not mean much to me. I used to enjoy Bonfire Night as my brother’s birthday is 4th November so we had great Bonfire parties, a tradition I continued with my children. But now November just brings people moaning about how fireworks frighten the horses and dogs and should be banned. Spoilsports.
Christmas is a drag with all the stuff you are supposed to do, it has lost any meaning. My personal celebration is the Winter Solstice when the solar return is heralded. It is what Christmas is based on anyway, the myth of a baby god/king born to a virgin in a cave at midwinter is thousands of years older than Christianity. The return/birth of the sun/son of God is truly something to celebrate and quite rightly early Christians adapted the story for Jesus.
I find the Summer Solstice rather a sad time. Another ending drawing nigh, nights starting to draw in. But as it takes until the end of July for that to be really noticeable and the weather is usually warm it is not as bad as September.
September musings. I must count my blessings. Apples, blackberries, plums, hazel nuts if you can get any in the moment when they are ripe but before the squirrels have them, acorns, conkers, sweet chestnuts….
And for those who don’t know it, or need to be reminded, John Keats’ view of the season
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.