I’ve been thinking a lot about autumn lately, Keats’ “season of mists and yellow fruitfulness”.
The first book I bought for my Kindle reader is Laura Ingalls’ Friends Remember Her: Memories from Laura’s Ozarks Home, by Dan L. White. I hadn’t heard of this book before and have enjoyed reading it. One of the interesting items in the book is a poem written by Wilder in honor of autumn.
If you’ve read this blog since it’s early days, you’ll know every year at the start of autumn I read Wilder’s description of autumn from her first book, Little House in the Big Woods. It provides a lovely description of the season from a child’s perspective. It also helps me to ignore our hot California weather and to imagine an autumn with all the trimmings. I’m adding Laura’s poem as quoted in White’s book to my list of best-loved descriptions of autumn. Written later in her life, it offers her adult perspective on the season, and is an interesting contrast to the Little House in the Big Woods description, which focused more on indoor preparations.
“I strolled today down a woodland path —
A crow cawed loudly and flew away.
The sky was blue and the clouds were gold
And drifted before me fold on fold;
The leaves were yellow and red and brown
And patter, patter the nuts fell down,
On this beautiful, golden autumn day.
A squirrel was storing his winter hoard,
The world was pleasant; I lingered long,
The brown quails rose with a sudden whirr
And a little bundle, of eyes and fur,
Took shape of a rabbit and leaped away.
A little chipmunk came out to play
And the autumn breeze sang a wonder song.”
-Laura Ingalls Wilder
I’d love to know what are your favorite autumnal descriptions. What gets you in the spirit of the changing season? Please leave me a comment below if you have a favorite.
Have a great weekend! See you in the stacks!