Dear All,

I hope you have had a good week.  I suspect we are all conscious of the move into Autumn & that awareness surely brings with it varied feelings.  Our theme this week is Autumn & we hope amongst the attachments you will find something that resonates.  We have included the much loved & well known ‘To Autumn’ by Keats.

Our blessing is ‘My Peace’ from Sacred Dance.  I hope it brings you much peace as we move into a new week.

With our love & prayer

 

Autumn.    Macrina Wiederkehr.

 

Autumn is a wondrous metaphor for the transformation that takes place in the human heart each season.  When we notice a subtle change of light outside our windows, we know the dark season is near.  Everything is being prepared for winter.  Autumn calls us in from the playground of summer & asks significant questions about our own harvest: what do we need to gather into our spiritual barns?   What in our lives needs to fall away like autumn leaves so another life waiting in the wings can have its turn to live?

It is easy to read the human story in these autumn pages between summer & winter.  This is the season that evokes nostalgia & pours longing into human hearts.  Autumn speaks of connection & yearning, wisdom & ageing, transformation & surrender, emerging shadows, & most of all, mystery.  This is the season that touches our longing for home, for completion.  We are invited to let go, to yield ……. Yes, to die.  We are encouraged to let things move in our lives.  Let them flow on into some new life-form just as the earth is modelling these changes for us.

 

The season of autumn will not stay with us for ever.  It will fall into the womb of winter.  In that dark resting place another dimension of growth will reveal itself.  Each season’s entrance & departure is party of a gracious turning of the circle of life.  Autumn will return to the land & to our lives when it is time.

 

Autumn   Steve Garnaas-Holmes

Autumn comes with a little woven basket
for gathering, harvesting.
She looks at the garden, and you.

A time of plucking,
of saying “Good enough.”
Greater dreams go to the compost pile.

Laying out the fruits, admiring,
thanking, forgiving, noticing
what thrived or didn’t.

Colors deepen,
textures grow small, grasslike.
What is fragile looks boldest in its dying.

Shadows come out of their hiding.
Footfalls rustle.
Chill knocks, and enters.

A time of cherishing, and laying to rest.
Held by a deeper turning, remembering
the seeds we save.

In every space now a grave silence opens,
and singing, grateful,
balanced on this moment.

On the first day of spring
this is what you remember.
Letting go, you dive in.

 

Planting a Seed.                        Joyce Rupp.

Each year I observed my mother planting her large garden with vegetable & flower seeds while my father sowed the fields of black earth with kernels of corn, soybeans, & oats.  Over the summer I enjoyed watching this coming to life, amazed at the greening & growth emerging from the plantings.  When autumn arrived happiness skipped inside of me as we gathered the garden’s abundance & loaded the heaping wagons with golden grain from the fields.  All this coming from what was once small nondescript seeds.  What a truly wondrous process within a seed when it is cared for & tended.

 

To Autumn

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, 
   Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun; 
Conspiring with him how to load and bless 
   With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run; 
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees, 
   And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core; 
      To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells 
   With a sweet kernel; to set budding more, 
And still more, later flowers for the bees, 
Until they think warm days will never cease, 
      For summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store? 
   Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find 
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor, 
   Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind; 
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep, 
   Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook 
      Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers: 
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep 
   Steady thy laden head across a brook; 
   Or by a cyder-press, with patient look, 
      Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of spring? Ay, Where are they? 
   Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,— 
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day, 
   And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue; 
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn 
   Among the river sallows, borne aloft 
      Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies; 
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn; 
   Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft 
   The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft; 
      And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

John Keats.