At 3:PM today, I noticed that my shadow is 11 feet long on level ground.  All around me the light seemed slanted.  There was a slight bight in the air, not so much as to draw blood but just to make sure you don’t get too cocky.  Fall is entrenched.  No turning back.

My god why would I want to go back?  I have been there.  I can’t wait to see what forward looks like.  My shadow will get longer until the winter solstice.  I’ll be sure to report.  Slanting light is what gives character to this season, and you know it.  Moody light.  Penetrating light. Texture emphasizing light.  The little prism that hangs in my south window picks it up and scatters it in unusual places, coming in, as it does these days, at such a low angle.

Why does any of this matter?  Perhaps it does not.  But for me, it is the predictability of the whole thing. It’ll be here again next year.  That feels right and gives me some sense of place and belonging.  It is a same time next year kind of event, but without Allan Alda and Ellen Burstyn complicating things with that delightful affair of theirs.  I haven’t seen that in years.  Is it time for a reprise?

I’ll not soon forget standing in my yard at noon on a sunny December 21st when I first took up residence near the 45th parallel and saw my shadow extending several yards away.  There’s a quality to that light: bright yet distant.  That’s it, of course.  The sun is as far from us as it can be in this cycle of astronomical events.  The living universe making itself known.  I just stood there and wondered, “Where am I”?  Long shadows, where I came from, are a morning and evening phenomenon only.  I relished the moment, and still do.

Now fall colors are plentiful.  Evenings call for a sweater and perhaps a wind shell as well. My mind is focused on supper while the spheres above move inexorably in their orbital travels.  I think it’s pepperoni pizza tonight.

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