The coolness of the air burns in the middle of my chest. A clarity of light moves over everything, moves through me. I see the leaves as they are—more frail than they appeared a few days ago, before the wind came and lashed the trees about and stole the heat away, before the light changed. And I see myself as I am. Part of this decaying world. I feel it every year, at this time. Summer is not invincible; I am not invincible. I ache for the words to capture the essence of something more beautiful than anything I’ve ever known, something the chill cannot wilt.
Rain is dripping from the sky. I can hear it past the window, like suds bursting. Grass that was crackling yesterday, whirring with grasshoppers, is now drinking deeply and flushing green, a final stand against the coming autumn. My chest burns. There’s nothing to be done but hold the pain there and let it move my heart closer to Home. And then turn my gaze from the silver sky, from the stillness of the trees, and write.