Sunday, September 21, 2008

Autumnal Equinox

The world balances tomorrow, until the dark begins to win for a little while. In other places, the coming of fall is marked with changing leaves. Here, we know that the wheel turns when the fish are in the river, fighting to spawn and die.
When I went walking this morning, the heavy rains had cleared and a rainbow was hanging low over the mountains. Everything felt clean, including me. I could feel the melancholy that had been creeping its way into my head rinsed away. It made me feel light and new.
When I lived in Colorado, there would be fall mornings when I would awaken and the world would have turned to gold. Every aspen leaf in the state seemed to lose its verdancy at the same moment; the sunlight on the aspen stands was twice as brilliant. There is no such drama here. Just the salmonberry leaves quietly shifting to the hue of midsummer's berries.
The rocks were littered already with bones. The river was full of gulls. The air was thick with their urgency; their cries were deafening. I thought back to the first time I saw this scene. It was raining that first day. I had walked from the campus alone, the first time I had been by myself in weeks. I went to the river and listened to the screaming of the birds, and it felt so alien that I cried. I wanted the world to burst into sudden autumnal fire, I wanted snow to dust the peaks that embraced me, I wanted to be far from the smell of death and renewal. Now it is just the lullaby before winter's rest.

Soon enough I will be lamenting the snow and pining for spring's merry dance. For now, though, I will let myself drift with the light.

1 comment:

  1. The salmon spawn is still the most remarkable natural phenomenon I've ever been lucky enough to observe...
    this post made me homesick!