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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Summer Sings Into Fall

The amplified music rolls over roofs, down alleys, spills into the house. I pause in the kitchen, knife poised over the last of the truly good cucumbers, tilt my head to listen as an amplified voice chatters excitedly in some Latin American tongue. Since my Spanish is limited to being able to ask for “one more, please” or to understand that if I “marco dos” I will hear the information regarding my bank account in a language other than my own, I have no idea what he’s saying, only that high, childish voices cheer and chant when he finishes.

The sound is confusing, muffled and bouncing among the two- and three-story houses. Jeff, two blocks away, sends a text: Is there music in the park today? He refers to the large park across the street. I go out onto the porch. There had been two shifts of Hispanic families and their futbol teams, the inevitable ice cream man trolling hopefully at their outskirts; but the park is empty now.

It’s a beautiful day, the kind that reminds you of summer’s fragility. Sure the leaves are green, the sky brilliantly blue, but every night, the temperature dips just a little bit lower, and the mornings now beg the question: Do I wear a jacket, knowing I won’t need it in the afternoon?

The quiet approach of fall – like the muffling silence of a blizzard – brings somberness with it. The wind blows in ever-cooler gusts, and something primordial in the back of my mind whispers “Store up. Make sure there will be enough.”

The music drifts over my roof and through my windows: a bass guitar, an electric piano, and a man’s plaintive voice.

I still can’t tell where it’s coming from or what he’s talking about, but it sounds like “say good-bye”.

31 comments:

Susan in the Boonies said...

Can't get here soon enough for me!

My basil's kind of melancholy about the whole situation, however...

Audubon Ron said...

Cinco de Septembero. It can happen.

Sioux said...

What a lovely, wistful post, Pearl. So different from your norm, but inspired as always.

(It just makes me wonder what the shift in weather does to those two crazy cats of yours...)

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

Sound travels on that soft autumn air.

darlin said...

Your writing is amazing! I like the way you described the onset of fall and the music drifting into your house. I feel as though I was there, maybe helping with the cukes or maybe just sitting back on your porch listening to the music... nah, if I was there I'd be in there helping you out! lol

Have a wonderful weekend, take the jacket and leave it in the car when the afternoon sun peeks through and warms the soul!

Leenie said...

That jacket question...more jackets get left in the park to find their way to another home this time of year. Loved your post. Good weekend to you.

Shelly said...

How lovely to hear of your approaching fall. I truly enjoyed the sensory journey in your piece.

We, too, have four seasons here in South Texas. They are Summer, Summer, Summer, and a very tiny Autumn.

jabblog said...

You sum it up so well - the slow decline of summer into something more bracing.

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

Ah yes, the primordial messages. One of mine is "Eat chocolate and fatten up against the coming cold weather." I hear it and I obey.

Joyful Things said...

When I feel fall in the air I "store up" too. Just like the squirrels and the bear I store fat for the oncoming cold snowy months. I keep it for the summer months too - just in case.......

jenny_o said...

Beautifully reflective writing today - echoes our weather here too.

Although the heat and humidity of summer makes me want to shave my head and lie in a bathtub of cool water 24/7, the fall weather brings with it a feeling of melancholy, which can be mentally just as uncomfortable.

We've gone from a week of daytime temperatures of 30 C down to 9 C in under 48 hours. And today the breeze in the leaves is whispering a warning here too. (I'm so glad I didn't shave my head!)

Amber Star said...

I think I just had a chill.

We had a day like that day before yesterday. It was so cool it felt like early spring, not fall. It was so strang after the gawd awful heat of this past summer.

Diez y seis de septiembre Father Hidalgo launched the Mexican War of Independence against Spain.

Clipped Wings said...

You hit it right on, describing this time of year. Lovely.

the walking man said...

GAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
or is it
WAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
[;-]

.
.
.
.

Douglas said...

What's a season? Isn't that what you put on food? We don't really have them down here, though it does not get as hot for a few months each year and, during those months, it may actually get cold and I will have to wear "Big Boy pants" on the golf course sometimes. I'd rather sweat.

Jerry said...

You said it just right, and it makes me wistful. Especially here in Houston when we know summer has broken because the temp dipped below 100.

The Elephant's Child said...

And here summer is lurking like an ugly monster around the corner. Bring back winter I say (though spring is magical). I want a tardis.

Belle said...

Lovely writing!

Vapid Vixen said...

Stop it! Just stop it! I'm not listening. *sticks fingers in ears*
LALALALALALALALALA.....

Linda O'Connell said...

Ahhh, yes, the flip flop of clothes and shoes when I'd rather be wearing flip flops year 'round. But I have to tell ya, last night with the windows open and the temperature hovering in the 40s, I was glad for my fuzzy socks.

24 Corners said...

We had to turn the heat on today. Fall is definitely 'saying goodbye'...with a windy, sprinkly, and chilly wave.
xo J~

mrwriteon said...

Wonderfully poetic, dear friend. You made me almost feel good about the forthcoming wretched season of our discontent. 'Almost' I emphasize.

Gigi said...

I can say this, I only wish fall was whispering about. Mother Nature, in all her cruelness, had us in the high 90's one day only to plummet to barely getting out of the 50's in less than a day. Methinks, autumn may just skip right over the Carolinas this year - as did spring, come to think of it.....

Eva Gallant said...

We resisted turning on the heat today. Wore sweatshirts in the house instead. Did have to turn on the electric blanket last night though. Summer is making it's exit!

lisleman said...

let the fall be long and the winter short

Tempo said...

Lament the changing season and despair at the approaching cold but know that over here we are rejoicing in the change, looking forward to the warmth of the Spring sunshine. Today we had half a day at the local car racing followed by a trip to the beach with just 6 of my grandkids to splash and play in the water and enjoy the warm day... Love is just like this!

Crystal Pistol said...

I love the cooling weather. I find it so soothing after the blister of summer.

Beautifully written, Pearl. :)

Symdaddy said...

Ah, Pearlchen! A dream (as always) to read. However, winter (and it's approach) is all in the mind. You will never feel the chill, have to trudge through knee deep snow or have scrape ice from your windscreen if you keep the memory of of summer firmly inside your head.

Nah! Only kidding! Yer all gonna shiver yer asses off!

Sorry!

R. Jacob said...

All those feelings I know too well. That is why we moved to south Florida. Now if there is something I could do about the daylight getting shorter!

Daisy said...

The mornings and evenings here have changed too, and the nesting instinct is kicking in. I love the change, tho not having to go out in the rain for my morning constitutional!
Daisy

The Vegetable Assassin said...

I like Fall. However, I'd prefer if it was less of an asshole and say...heralded the start of ANOTHER summer, instead of warning us to button up our extremities or die.