Gathering Handfuls of Autumn

These are precious days. Everywhere there’s beauty to please the spirit. Broccoli gone to bloom, filled with grateful bees. A halo of red maple leaves fallen onto green grass. Blackbirds rising and swooping in tides from treetop to grass to field. Bright yellow and orange trees waving against blue skies. I’ll find any excuse to spend more time outside to savor these days.

I picked the rest of the shelling beans, all lovely shades of pink and purple. Unsure exactly how to dry them to use later, I blanched and froze them instead after saving some for next year’s seed. The drying procedure probably isn’t all that complicated. Maybe next fall I’ll have my act together.

I grabbed all the green tomatoes I could before the first hard frost.  There must be forty pounds of them, ripening fast in the basement. Probably tomato soup for dinner tonight.

The chard is still going strong, four rows deep, enough that my family is weary of it appearing in different guises. I eat some most days and pick the larger, older stalks for my friends the bovines who are more grateful than my human family.

The Brussels sprout plants are nearly as tall as I am, although the seeds I tucked in the ground just a few months ago were so tiny they threatened to blow away in a breeze. The amount of biomass the plant creates, thick stalk and huge leaves for those small sprouts, always surprises me. Some of us love them roasted with garlic and butter. Certain other family members call them “Satan’s tiny cabbages.”

Although we’ve had a few frosts I’m still gathering roses to scent the house, herbs for sauces, veggies for meals. I don’t know if the second planting of peas will have time to mature. Their flowers are only beginning to open as November looms.

We have a few bushels of apples here waiting to be canned into sauce (I think my family is tired of pies) and a few pumpkins waiting to be carved (I’m eager to roast their seeds). but right now I’m not going to stand in the kitchen ignoring this day I’ll be heading outside for a windswept walk, saving every bit of autumn before it folds into winter.

About Laura Grace Weldon

Laura Grace Weldon is the author of four books and served as 2019 Ohio Poet of the Year. She's the editor of Braided Way: Faces & Voices of Spiritual Practice. She works as a book editor, teaches writing workshops, and maxes out her library card each week.
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1 Response to Gathering Handfuls of Autumn

  1. Sounds so lovely there! I started back to work last week, and having to conform to a schedule is taking it out of me..I miss feeling free to go work in the garden whenever I feel like it..and I need to do it, before we get the first frost. You inspire me!

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