It’s fall! Or rather, that moment on the very cusp of fall, when the air is still warm in the daytime but sharpens its knife at dusk, so that when you walk outside in the morning, it slices through your summer-conditioned skin like winter on crack. The sky is a blue that takes my breath…every time I see it, I swear I’ve never seen anything so blue and clear and vivid. The humidity has gone — oh joy! — and everything has such a startling clarity that I can only gaze about me in sheer wonder at the beauty that the world holds.

Why don’t I see this more often? I blame it on the choking haze of summer’s humid heat, but I wonder if the haze is more within myself? Is my soul as dank and smog-laden as the air we breathe for so much of the year? And does it take the slow winding-down of the seasons, the long and gradual death of the year, to wake me from my sweltering sleep of the spirit and make me see, truly see, what joy and beauty surround me?

Regardless, this beauty sings to my soul. I cannot see it, feel it, breathe it, taste it, enough. The trees are still green, and the unobscured sunlight filters through the leaves to dapple the pavement, to glint off the grass and warm not only my skin, but my heart and my very being. I want to sit and stare, gaze around me like a newborn child, as though the world is something I Have Never Seen…and perhaps it is.

I wonder, sometimes, what it is about fall and winter that call to me so? My spirit seems to sleep as the life around me burgeons and blooms…and with the steady, sweet slowing of the sap and the turning of the leaves, I come alive again.

The joy overwhelms me.