AUTUMN is the most romantic season of the year. For Keats it was mist and mellow fruitfulness. For me it is the season of crunchy texture and vibrant colour, nature’s grande finale before light and life is subsumed by the grey cloth of Winter.
There’s something about Autumn…
A certain nip in the air takes me back to the days of long woodland walks, dry twigs cracking underfoot. Kicking through leaves, scooping up armfuls, showering each other and laughing, not caring about cliché.
Stillness follows. I watch splashes of sunlight dance on broad trunks while you lift debris out of my hair with gentle hands. Your serious eyes drift to my mouth and I smile. Our fingers touch, then trace the lines and curves of other lovers’ names carved into the bark, an ancient heart pierced by a fading arrow.
Kissing in dappled light, surrounded by the sweet smell of damp earth and the warm breath of wood smoke. Above us, there might have been the flash of a brown feathery tail. At our feet, there might have been tiny beech nuts, prickly cases strewn.
Later, we find fairy rings and green moss carpets, scarlet rose hips and rowan berries. We pick blackberries, filling our mouths and pockets until our hands are scratched and scarred with purple. We have no basket for gathering pendulous clusters of elderberries but we dream of wine, twin glasses glowing red in front of the fire.
The light drains. Chill descends. We turn back.
The air is sharp, the sky slashed red above the horizon. A crescent moon sits high with a single pinprick star for company. Your hand is warm around mine.