A few days ago a friend posted a photo on Facebook of a stunning autumnal tree, and casually quoted Albert Camus: Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower. It struck a chord with me, as only the day before I had been talking with someone about the parallels between the two seasons, and - if choice were possible - which one is the more visually stunning.
Six months ago I walked along the Woodstock Road beneath frothy pink and white canopies, the blossom falling as delicate confetti at my feet. Spring's colour palette was pastel, set off by a hazy green-gold sheen; now those trees blaze red, copper and gold, and cast before me a crisp, multi-coloured carpet. In May pale wisteria cascaded down walls; now flaming red creepers crawl up them, bold and vibrant against dull grey. Leaves curl up in slow desiccation, echoing their unfurling into new life, six months ago and in six months to come; but when they glisten in rain or are resplendent in sunshine they are gloriously, beautifully alive, belying their imminent death.
Spring is a time filled with promise and new life; autumn is about letting go and dying, yes - but dying in a way which still speaks of life. In its colour and vibrancy autumn speaks powerfully of another way of living.
Spring is indeed beautiful and heart-lifting, but autumn is truly glorious!
And for those who have spring's energy and playfulness in their hearts, and eyes able to see beyond shedding and decay, autumn offers opportunities for dancing and play, as in this image which also appeared in my Facebook feed...