I love the changes that autumn brings, the cooler temperatures, the colors shifting from the bright pinks and buttery yellows of the summer flowers to the rusts and burnt oranges of the leaves, as if summer had consumed itself with growing, and now it turning to colors that, while still beautiful, are counting down the days until the frosts. There’s a sweet melancholy about it, but also—perhaps because I was a student for a lot of years—there’s a feeling of a fresh start, of renewed optimism. When I lived in High Country, I would take more pleasure drives in autumn than at any other season, to take in the deep gold of the cottonwood leaves, the fading purples of the fireweed, and the crisp air carrying the sounds of the elk rut.
Along the north shore, the maple trees turn to flame, Virginia creeper vines go even deeper, into magenta, and the V’s of Canada geese are heard throughout the days. My autumn drives now take me past fields of faded cornstalks, waiting to be cut, and gnarled apple trees studded with a few overlooked fruit. The constant in both places is the autumn music I take along on my drives. I listen to everything from Berlioz to Enya to Don Henley, depending on my mood and the weather. Today, there’s a mild steady rain and not too much wind. The sky and the lake are almost the same pewter color, the waves accented by a few whitecaps. I’m heading out in a few minutes to run a couple of errands, and then take the long way home, and bringing the Don Henley CD with The Boys of Summer on it. I used to play that one a lot in bright autumn days in the foothills—so much it reminds me of one particular stretch of my old road. But in some ways that song is even more appropriate for here, beside the lake. Here are the lyrics to the first verse:
Nobody on the road nobody on the beach I feel it in the air the summer's out of reach Empty lake, empty streets, the sun goes down alone I'm drivin' by your house Though I know you're not home
Since The Boys of Summer is a song about losing love, so it seems to fit the somber mood of the day. The photo was taken at the Point Pelee’s West Beach. You can almost hear the laughter echoing, see the ghosts of the picnic gear and umbrellas. The official video to this song, with its vintage footage, is a classic, too.
The Cloud Messenger (Meghadūta) is a lyric poem by the respected Indian poet, Kālidāsa. The poem centers around a yaksa in exile. Longing for his beloved, waiting for him on a Himalayan mountain, he asks a cloud to take a message to her. The sights he tells the cloud it will see on its way make up most of the poem.
The idea of recording observations appeals to me. I thought The Cloud Messenger was the perfect title for a blog about the journey that we all make as we move through our days.
I'm a baby boomer who grew up dancing in the streets of Detroit during the classic Motown years, lived beside the Rocky Mountains for many years, now retired and living (and writing full time) in S. Ontario. I have one blog for rock 'n' roll oldies, and one for nature, poetry and life along the Lake.