Remembering: Something in the autumn

Our Yorktown, Virginia neighborhood, November 2008

There is something in the autumn that is native to my blood —
Touch of manner, hint of mood;
And my heart is like a rhyme,
With the yellow and the purple and the crimson keeping time.  — Bliss Carman

Autumn reminds us of the brevity of life as the lush blossoms of summer fade and die away, replaced by the dazzling final act of foliage that will soon be gone.  The coming onset of winter can be depressing, yet somehow fall retains a unique splendor that makes it the favorite season for many of us.  That first snap of chill in the air after the summer heat breaks, followed by the excitement of the harvest holidays and winter merriment, help to take the sting out of the months of cold that will follow.

Update for 11-15-13, one year later:

Wow, I’ve sure gotten a lot chattier since I started this blog! I had forgotten how short I kept my comments. I’m thinking of borrowing the concept I saw on another blog – “Wordless Wednesdays” — and having a day for just a photo, no quote, no comments.  What do you think?  I love Carman’s poem — I say it to myself every fall, having learned it from the old Childcraft set I grew up reading — but really, does a photo such as the one above really need any words?  To see the original post with comments from one year ago today, look here.

This post was first published eight years ago today, and re-blogged seven years ago today. The original post, comments and photo are linked, along with two other related posts, below. These links to related posts, and their thumbnail photos, do not appear in the blog feed; they are only visible when viewing the individual posts by clicking on each one. I have no idea why, nor do I know how they choose the related posts. That’s just the way WordPress does things.


  1. Good morning, Julia!
    My parents also subscribed to Childcraft when I was young. It was full of good stuff. I remember we were getting it when my sister was little, and it seemed to have at least something for each of us, spanning a range of five years.
    I think I may even still have some issues in the basement somewhere….
    Thinking on your comments about your writings, I’m wondering, why don’t I “store” them on a book shelf instead of a box in the basement? Hmm.

    • Did Childcraft issue a magazine? We only ever had the set of hardbound volumes, full of wonderful color pictures that were all too rare in those days. I also loved World Book Encyclopedia and the yearly hardcover supplements that contained news and essays from that particular year. I was a true nerd who read dictionaries and encyclopedias for fun. My friends always noticed the ginormous unabridged dictionary in our home– a true conversation piece in those days, as most of them had never seen a book that size. Because it was too heavy to be easily retrieved from a bookshelf, we had to keep it on the desk or on a table. I don’t remember if I could even lift it when I was very young. When I look back at how frugal my parents were in the early years of my childhood, it amazes me that they bought what must have been a very expensive unabridged dictionary. I guess that was a huge unspoken statement to me about the power and value of words.

      • Very true! It seems both your parents and mine valued education and books.
        I think I know the set you mean! Yes, I was confused between that and the name of the magazine we got, Highlights. Apologies for that confusion, and thanks for helping clear that up! And our Childcraft set is currently in my basement, too, but on a bookshelf in my sewing room. 🙂

        • Those early books really do stay with us, don’t they? WOW– to think that we are now as removed from those 1960’s publications, as we were (in our childhoods) removed from those of the 1900s! Staggering to contemplate.

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