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Date:12/22/2014 4:48:06 AM
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We are at the height of our annual Autumn color. My Ruthie has made more excursions with her camera this fall than ever before. I've accompanied her on a few of them and I am amazed at how she can take a photo of what I think is an ordinary bit of scenery and turn it into a beautiful piece of art.

The red, orange, and yellow flames of the maples are the most spectacular. There are a few young maple saplings around here that stand out like candles, possessing all three colors and yet still contrasting them with the added base background of green. The photo that I've posted of the Great Maple at the homestead gives an example of this same color contrast on a very mature tree. What I thought was really cool was that our good neighbor, Lisa Rupiper, posted on Facebook a photo she took of the same tree. She called it "The Truckey Tree", and she made us feel honored to have such neighbors.

At this time of year, when we have the South wind bringing in a warm southern high pressure system, I love to see the warm winds move the colored branches of the trees. It is a painful pleasure, something that can only be understood by a true Countryman or naturalist. My son's friend Liz, only eighteen year of age, remarked recently that she felt the longing of the season. I totally understand. As Hal Borland wrote: "Spring fever can't hold a candle to October fever when it comes to inner restlessness." I must have expressed last year at this time that one feels the need to spread wings that one does not possess and wistfully imagines flying skyward on a warm, moonlit October night such as tonight. As I told Liz, I feel that feeling as well, and later, when the Maple and Poplar leaves have fallen, and the burgundy leaves of the Oaks reflect the low, late Autumn sunset, I will feel the additional urge to gather and to hoard, to dig and to burrow, and to line my winter quarters with insulating leaves, dry grass, and moss, and then hunker down amongst my Winter stores and rest for the Winter. October, although painfully bittersweet, remains my favorite month of the year. -- Gary
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