I live in the great Northwest. Sadly, it is not in pungent fir forests filled with babbling brooks or tumbling streams. What tumbles where I live, is tumbleweed. Most people think of snow capped, alpine images when they think of Washington state or Oregon. It is to my sorrow that I must tell you that a very small portion of the area is like that. Approximately 2/3 of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho are desert.
Now mind you, it's not Death Valley; but it's dry, lots of scrub and yes, tumbleweeds. The weather is extreme. Blistering summers, frigid winters, but spring and fall are glorious. The only trees we have are those that have been planted. None are indigenous to this area as far as I know, however, there are lots of trees around and they bloom vigorously in spring and go ablaze in fall. There is a reason for all this, be patient.
One fall I was daydreaming out the sliding glass doors, admiring the view filled with apple trees, pear trees, the thick green grass, the swaying golden leaves on the white birch. The birds were going wild at the feeders, the sky was brilliant blue. All this was set against the backdrop of tan, dead scrub and a pasture filled with beautiful cattle. (This is cowboy country. No really, true cowboy country. Agriculture and beef, that's us.)
Back to my picture. Anyway, I began to notice that the clouds were getting a little dark on the bottom and the wind was picking up. In less than fifteen minutes it was a full blown storm. By the time it was over it was as if someone had picked up the ground and then dropped it. Most of the leaves were off the trees, small branches were everywhere, fruit covered the ground accompanied by a definite drop in temperature. Being November I knew the weather was going to change soon but it usually does it at a little slower pace. Not this year. We went from fall to winter in about an hour. Two days later, it snowed. Such is the Northwest.
Why tell you this? I was so taken with the ferocity and swiftness of that particular storm and its consequences that I had to put pen to paper. I saw through those plates of glass a living, breathing thing that changed my world. Nature had exposed herself to me and I blushed. Voluptuous, sensual, glorious, cunning and cruel, in all her feminine ways and wiles I had seen the invisible. Mother earth had heaved a sigh and nature heard. I can still conjure up that scene and it still takes my breath away. I have attempted to put the life force I felt that day into the words I wrote. I hope you will be able to catch a particle of my experience. Till next time.............
The land is nestling in for winter.Earth, moist from new rain, permeates
The biting air with heady, acrid smells.
Nature’s labor of summer bears fruit,A royal cache of gold leaves, red apples, purple berries;
Field and wood lay burdened with bounty.
A cerulean sky is filled with puffy white clouds
That scurries quickly by
on rapidly swelling winds.
They know what’s coming.
The trees sway gently when suddenly,Winds of imposing strength
Push and shove them into a fevered dance.
The brightness scowls into darkness, winds howl and whip.Summer’s bounty falls to earth as a bruised sky weeps,
Sad at the loss of autumn’s glorious embellishments.
Gone as abruptly as it came, the dark sky grows blue.The air, brisk with chill, hurries winter gatherers to pillage
The spoils of disasters spill.
The earth draws closer in, she whispers to her charges,“It is coming, fall deeper into rest,
Time now for sleep, time to refresh.”