My husband's grandfather had a unique saying. "You can fall anytime of the year, but Autumn comes only once." As I watch our leaves begin to turn here on the East Coast, I'm struck by how this season has lost the word "autumn" to become just fall.
Autumn has a crisp sound. It sings to my soul. It speaks of days gone by when the neighborhood children would get together and we'd rake leaves making forts to play in. After a week, the decomposition of the leaves would settle the huge piles from shoulder to waist. Another week and they'd be to our knees. At that time they would be raked into a pile to do the "Charlie Brown" jump in before our parents place them in the outside rubbish bins to burn.
Autumn's days would dwindle. Dusk came quickly. By 4:30, we'd be inside or on the back porch doing homework while she smells of hot hardy meals drifted out the screen door to tempt us inside.
Sweatshirts would give way to light jackets. Which we worried would ruin our outfits for All Hallows Eve. You couldn't give any hints. Your outfit was as top secret as any government covert operation. Oh, the memories, the fun shared in a community.
Ah, Autumn, I remember you well.