It’s the most wonderful time of the year. And no, I’m not talking about Christmas. It’s October baby, and that means so much more than Pumpkin Latte’s from Starbucks (yuck!). It means crisp mornings and post season baseball (go Red Sox!) and armfuls of freshly picked apples (Honeycrisp please!). Its the time of year when summer tarries, for little while, through the shortening daylight, while it dies slowly from autumn’s cold kiss. It’s the time of year when vividly colored leaves scuttle across the sidewalk, like brittle crabs, only to be picked up by the wind and thrown into blue oblivion. Thirty one bright and magnificent days consummating into the greatest holiday of them all: Halloween.
I think I like this time of year the most because it is a haunted time of year. The ghosts are the memories of a year almost gone, still whispering and rattling their old chains. Children’s voices calling out at the end of a long, hot summer day. The sound of running shoes, or bare feet, in the grass. The smell of the first flower to bloom and of the first blade of grass to be cut. The crack of the wooden bat and the thwack of a ball slamming into a leather mitt. These things are out there still, but they’re fading, and soon they’ll be gone, buried under the snow and the cold, bitter winter wind.
October is a turning point, the golden years of a life well spent. Soon death will come. But not yet.
The Mums are in full bloom, soaking up the lingering sunlight. Oranges and reds and yellows. These are the colors of autumn. I was never taken by Mums before moving to Iowa. As a matter of fact, I don’t think I’ve ever bought or planted flowers this time of year. Is this a midwest thing? Maybe, but I’m loving the last bit of color in my yard.
Out come the decorations. They’ve been waiting, screaming from closed boxes in the corner of the garage. This is the first year we’ve actually decorated for Halloween. I’ve always wanted to, and we certainly have the yard to do it now. With the old brick barn and the old hog sheds, we’d have a pretty good landscape for a haunted house. Maybe that’s something to think about for the future.
There’s no lack of creativity in our house. The boys have been busy with their art projects. I’m glad I’m not the only one who is inspired by October and the creepy things it brings.
Whether you’re a Halloween fan or not, there’s plenty of things to enjoy this time of year. Just take a look around you and you’ll see a world in metamorphosis. Each day is magical, in a real sense, because of the strange beauty it holds. This unwinding, this quiet unbecoming, this last inhalation of life.
The sun rises on a foggy road, and it sets on a field of golden corn stubble already gleaned by the autumn people. October is there, in between it all, with the wind in her auburn hair.
I love this time of year.