Fall has come and with it the gray days. The sun sits low on the horizon casting long shadows. Daylight hours are in short supply with the sun setting as I return home from work. When it gets dark I get sleepy; the time is irrelevant. When I think of fall I see a mother tucking in her children, protecting them from the wind and cold, preparing a meal for when they wake. And they will… for after the fall, and the long days of winter, spring will arrive to wake us from these gray days.
But now it is fall and as the trees begin a period of dormancy their leaves fall creating thick blankets. So many of my neighbors remove this warm, nourishing blanket placing it on the street like so much trash. Shredded leaves with traces of grass are free for the taking throughout town. I bring them home and tuck in the shrubs, the perennial beds, the garden. I make large piles. Some are stirred and mixed with kitchen scraps. These breakdown to form a rich compost… food for the garden; others are allowed to slowly decay making a rich moisture retentive leaf mold.. more food for the garden
The gray days. We need them.