Saturday, October 25, 2014

As the leaves take leave...

I spent part of this morning watching leaves close to the house fall from left to right, while those further west by one hundred or so yards fell right to left. Swirling breeze? Anyhow, the trees are becoming bare enough to make it fairly easy to spot haunts drifting through the air come Halloween.

haunted jack-o-lanterns
Halloween haunts
Photo by J. Harrington

Yesterday we had dinner in Minneapolis at the Smack Shack in the North Loop area. We ate outside on the patio and had to request that the space heater(?) closest to us be turned down because it was too warm, in late October, in Minnesota! (I hope that's a sign of things to come this Winter.) As has been the case each time I've eaten there, the food was really good and, on the drive home, we got to watch an incredibly attractive sunset. Here's a similar version from a few weeks ago (for reasons I don't begin to understand, iPhoto's file export washes out the deeper reds in almost all sky shots, he fussed).

Autumn sunset
Autumn sunset (faded version)
Photo by J. Harrington

This morning while I was poking around the Internet, I came across something I didn't know existed and want to look into some more. Thanks to Birdchick, I learned that it's possible to attach a digital camera to a spotting scope. I'm going to see how the costs compare with an upgrade to my telephoto lens, but the examples shown are better than most of my shots, although I suspect that has as much to do with the photographer as it does with the equipment. Now, in celebration of the season and my Irish heritage, please enjoy:

Samhain

By Annie Finch 

(The Celtic Halloween) 

In the season leaves should love,
since it gives them leave to move
through the wind, towards the ground
they were watching while they hung,
legend says there is a seam
stitching darkness like a name.

Now when dying grasses veil
earth from the sky in one last pale
wave, as autumn dies to bring
winter back, and then the spring,
we who die ourselves can peel
back another kind of veil

that hangs among us like thick smoke.
Tonight at last I feel it shake.
I feel the nights stretching away
thousands long behind the days
till they reach the darkness where
all of me is ancestor.

I move my hand and feel a touch
move with me, and when I brush
my own mind across another,
I am with my mother's mother.
Sure as footsteps in my waiting
self, I find her, and she brings

arms that carry answers for me,
intimate, a waiting bounty.
"Carry me." She leaves this trail
through a shudder of the veil,
and leaves, like amber where she stays,
a gift for her perpetual gaze.


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