Does this photo from a September post look familiar? The light was just right that morning, the foliage in our back yard at the peak of luxuriance.
My, the difference two months makes:
Shorter days, cooler temperatures, wind and rain have taken their toll, stripping aged, brown leaves from their stems.
The houses that were hidden from view all summer are now exposed.
In a few weeks when all the leaves are gone, we’ll be able to see the faraway turrets of “the castle” above the trees. Visions of fairy tale kingdoms dance in my head.
(Believe it or not, that’s actually a water tower.)
Some vegetation is still in full fall display,
While other foliage looks pitifully bedraggled.
A continual leaf-shower creates a crunchy carpet for the deck…
(Steve just swept two days ago.)
…and clutters the planters.
This is the price we pay for those glorious weeks of riotous color in October.
Now comes the season of quiet dormancy.
After such glory, the crumbling decay of leaf and flower seems tragically sad until we remember…
…the world will come to life again with ethereal beauty,
and we’ll revel in the euphoria of spring.
As winter strips the leaves from around us
So that we may see the distant regions
They merely concealed,
So old age takes away our enjoyments
Only to enlarge the prospect
Of the coming of eternity.
–Jean Paul, author (1763-1825)
The first four lines sound tragically sad, don’t they, until we remember the euphoria of what is to come, and the prospect of ethereal Beauty in the kingdom of eternity.
“Your eyes will see the King in his beauty and view a land that stretches afar” (Isaiah 33:17).
Even when times are dismal, cold, and gray…
…glorious HOPE is ours!
(Photo credits–Fall foliage and Mount Airy Water Tower: www.pinterest.com. Red bud in spring: www.etsy.com. All others photos: Nancy Ruegg.