Sunday, 6 November 2016
"One Night Of Wind"
"One thing alone changes rapidly at this time of year, and that is the colour of the leaves on the trees. They are as bright as flowers, and replace in gaiety the fruit we have gathered from the garden. But even this change is slow as compared with the rush of spring, when the leaves burst from their bud and clothe the trees in a flash of time. Since the beginning of September the leaves have been turning, varying in date with tree and weather. Weeks of calm will keep the leaves on the trees, as though they were forgetting to fall. They will be torn off in one night of wind. All the leaves by now have returned their sap to the tree, except the undramatic walnut which, like the ash, refuses to end it year in a blaze of colour, and lingers until the frosts strip off the leaves and scatter them at its base in a dirty, blackish green heap. The garden now is riotous in colour, in graduations of yellow and gold, bronze and crimson. We are reconciled at this moment to our smoke-grey, for it is an unequalled foil to these flaming leaves "
~ words from 'Four Hedges' by Clare Leighton.
~ illustration by Lena Anderson.
That "one night of wind" arrived in Cumbria on Friday night. Spending what will probably be the last weekend of the year in our caravan, I was awoken by a tremendous noise of the wind in the early hours. It took a long time to go back to sleep as the roof was hammered by falling autumnal debris. Come morning I peeked out of the door to see that in just one night almost all the glowing red leaves on my little acer had been stripped from the tree. Has that significant one night of wind arrived in your neck of the woods yet?