Preparing for Autumn

We are almost half way into a new month, and I am beginning to think of the fall season...

I am beginning to look forward to nesting, to journeying inward, to curling up on the couch with a  warm throw, and a steaming cup of tea...

It is a time for reflection, and greater contemplation...

This morning I read an article by Christine Valters Paintner, "Abbess" of Abbey of the Arts, an online virtual monastery, that a wonderful friend introduced me to, and she spoke of autumn and winter and being the seasons of the monk. So true!

After the buoyancy and openness of the summer months, there is a true desire for me to retreat, and to give myself wholly to the coming season...

The days are getting shorter, the sun sets earlier, and in a few days the Autumnal Exquinox will arrive, followed by the High Holy Days...

Paintner began her article with this beautiful poem by Rilke, which I shall leave you with, and I've included another autumn poem by Rilke translated by Stephen Mitchell:

The leaves are falling, falling as if from far up,
as if orchards were dying high in space.
Each leave falls as if it were motioning "no."

And tonight the heavy earth is falling
away from all other stars in the loneliness.

We're all falling. This hand here is falling.
And look at the other one. It's in them all.

And yet there is Someone, whose hands
infinitely calm, are holding up all this falling.

~ "Autumn" by Rainer Maria Rilke (translated by Robert Bly)

Autumn Day

Lord: it is time. The huge summer has gone by.
Now overlap the sundials with your shadows,
and on the meadows let the wind go free.

Command the fruits to swell on tree and vine;
grant them a few more warm transparent days,
urge them on to fulfillment then, and press
the final sweetness into the heat wine.

Whoever has no house now will never have one.
Whoever is alone will stay alone,
will sit, read, write long letters through the evening,
and wander along the boulevards, up and down,
restlessly, while the dry leaves are blowing.

~ Ranier Maria Rilke, translated by Stephen Mitchell


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