For many people, the seasonal shift that starts every September is simply the gloomy precursor to short days, endless nights, and the dreaded threat of a winter cold.
Whilst most people no longer associate autumn with glorious abundance, the first chill in the air sends me into spasms of ‘fruitfulness’, my creative faculties instantly ignited by the flourish of colours in the world of the outdoors.
To celebrate the dying of the light, it’s become a bit of a tradition for a couple of my friends and I to have an autumnal picnic. As ‘autumn babies’ we all have a strange affinity with the season, and love nothing more than to don the layers for our own little feast.
This year, we may have done it a bit early. The first leaves had barely graced the grass before we were laying out our spread in the park, eagerly discussing the arrival of ‘magic in the air’. There were no trees ablaze with the fiery shades of the season; no romantic mists; no swallows gathering for epic journeys halfway across the world.
Even in the absence of these Keatsian notions however, the park had a certain quality; a charm; a sense of enchantment that made my skin tingle, and infused all of us with excitement at the prospect of the rosy glow of autumn.
And I realised: this is what I love about this time of year- the anticipation of awe. The knowledge that something magical is about to happen to the natural world. The fact that anyone can experience it.
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t always need money to enjoy the world. As long as you have some degree of appreciation, imagination, and a willingness to attune your senses to the elemental magic in the air, life can be as abundant with wonder as you want it to be…