Wednesday, November 12, 2014

A Salute to November

November in Pennsylvania is the month of dry leaves swirling in a brisk wind. The green landscape of summer has turned to a dull brown except for the pines and hemlock dotting the hillsides. The oaks struggle to hang onto their leaves as they await the first snowfall while the bare arms of the maples shiver under cold gray skies.

This is a time of smoke curling from chimneys, wild geese winging southward, and once fertile fields stretching out barren and vacant. The last roses still cling to their stems along with the red berries of the mountain ash. Marigolds and geraniums defy the first light frosts of the season and stand proud in the chilly wind. Along sidewalks and on porches, golden pumpkins are piled in clusters or are marching in a line, showing off their many shades, shapes, and sizes. Dried corn stalks surround the lamp posts on our main street through town, and winter wood is stacked in perfect rows along buildings, awaiting fireplaces and wood burners. Deer enter the backyards now and scour the fruit trees for the last apples and pears.

November is a time for apple and pumpkin pie, nuts, hot chocolate, a book and a cozy chair. It’s a time for reflecting on the past year and being thankful for the beauty of our world that will slowly fall to sleep under a blanket of white, yet awake again when spring’s warm breath blows across the land.

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