Each must be the last
“Each golden day was cherished to the full, for one had the feeling that each must be the last. Tomorrow it would be winter.” ― Elizabeth Enright
A great many of us have experienced an unusually warm autumn so far, though it seems the cold weather is creeping in. Eager for cooler temperatures, having had our fill of too-warm afternoons and turbulent weather, we feel a wistful longing for golden fall days that strike the perfect balance between summer and winter.
In Virginia, our trees are barely beginning to turn, and I’m hoping we will have at least a few weeks to enjoy foliage before the leaves fall. But I’ve enjoyed the lingering blooms of this warm October. At our York home the remnants of summer colors are overlapping with the beginning of the camellia flowers.
Early this year, in a rare burst of optimism, I decided to plant a blackberry bush in our back yard near the deck. The young K-Mart clerk who talked me into buying the inexpensive plant assured me that it would not be hard to grow. Her enthusiasm when describing her own blackberry plants was contagious, and I decided to take a chance, though I was already preparing for disappointment by telling myself that my own little blackberry bush was unlikely to do very well with only the sporadic care I would be able to give it.
But the K-Mart clerk was right; the plant did beautifully. I’ve even been able to eat a few berries from it. Here is one that I picked most recently, big and ripe and delicious as only a home-grown fruit can be. Now I will try to nurture the plant (which has grown almost as tall as I am) through the coming winter.
Are there traces of summer still lingering in the region you call home? Or, if you live south of the equator, has spring broken through the chill yet? Seasons bless us with the repeated reminder that life is fragile and subject to change. With the cycles of nature, our eyes are opened anew to the sobering truth that we almost never know when we are experiencing the last of anything precious– or at least a temporary parting from what we’ve grown to take for granted. Whatever this day brings you, cherish it to the full. For better or worse, it will soon be gone.