Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Robed in Gold and Sky

And so it goes... Many trees in the Lanark highlands have already lost their leaves and fallen asleep in their leaf-strewn alcoves, but others are turning now.  Still others hold their turning in abeyance until late in November, and we are always happy to see them on our rambles.

Whole hillsides of lacy tamarack have turned to gold, and their foliage dazzles the eyes. When I remember their splendor in the depths of winter, the memory will leave me close to tears and hankering for a long trip on foot into the forests north of Lake Superior. No, not this year, perhaps next year...

Butternut trees on the hill are always the first to drop their leaves, but the great oaks along the trail into the deep woods retain their bronzey leaves well into winter, and native beeches are still wearing a delightful coppery hue. One of our favorite old sugar maples puts on a magnificent golden performance at this time of the year, and we attend her one woman show with pleasure. While in her clearing, we remembered to say thanks for her efforts to brighten a subdued and rather monochromatic interval in the turning of the seasons.

It has been a windy autumn, and we were delighted to discover this week that the north wind has not stripped Maple's leaves and left her standing bare and forlorn on the hill with her sisters. It (the wind, that is) has been doing its best, but the tree is standing fast. I would be "over the moon" if I could photograph or paint something even the smallest scrip as grand and elemental and graceful as Maple is creating in her alcove. Every curve and branch and burnished dancing leaf is a wonder, and the blue sky is a perfect counterpoint.

Writing this, I remembered that as well as being an archaic word for a scrap or fraction of something, scrip also describes a small wallet or pouch once carried by pilgrims and seekers.  That seems fitting for this journey into the woods and our breathless standing under Maple in all her golden glory.  Oh to belong to the woodland sisterhood of tree and leaf...

3 comments:

Barbara R. said...

Sitting in an apartment, looking out the window by my side at rain steadily dropping (just accumulating within the cloud that is only a foot or two above the trees) and our few leaves are finally russet and deep dogwood red, I am thrilled to experience your scrip! You take me to the sunny golden maple and I can crunch leaves beneath my feet. Have a delightful day.

robin andrea said...

So beautiful, taking this walk with you to look at the maple in its autumn splendor.

Barbara R. said...

It's me again...I noticed you were working on Thursday's post already, and it got posted. Tee tee, I thought I was the only one doing that. Anyway, I just bought my WeMoon calendar from Linda, and was surprised you haven't posted any of your writing there...because you have such a good way with words. I hope you'll consider it for the next one. Annelinde Metzner has one of her poems in it. Barb at When I was 69.