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Poor Will's Almanack: September 7 - 13, 2021

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via Flickr Creative Commons

Poor Will’s Almanack for the first week of Early Fall, the first week of the Hickory, Black Walnut and Pecan Nutting Moon, the fourth week the sun in Virgo

For many years, I have kept a map of the seasons with which I think about the alchemic secrets of traditional almanac weather forecasting.

Weather patterns are repeating fractal events, and sometimes I wish my weather journal would reveal the dimensions of the final forecasting frontier and allow me to predict the individual character of any season.

I read and reread my statistics, reflect over and over on the nature of the graphs. I feel that it’s all an encoded message from the past to the future. If only I could break the code.

Like an alchemist, I watch and stir the elements, trying new combinations of data and new ingredients to resolve my questions. Somehow, I feel that the solutions are already in front of me. If only I knew where or how to look.

And so I fantasize. I imagine that one day, I will stumble across the critical clue.

Inaccessible to distant satellites or radar or computers, the secret will tumble out onto my page like a climatic Rosetta stone, a Philosopher’s stone that will untangle the mysteries of the universe.

Then from this ordinary place, I will be able to listen to the call of a cricket or watch the breeze across the fields or the glow of the sunrise on the dew, and then I will know the future without the fallible instruments of science. I will see the next hurricane, the next blizzard and even the fate of the world tomorrow.

This is Bill Felker with Poor Will Almanack. I’ll be back again next week with notes for the second week of Early Fall. In the meantime, don’t stop looking. The answer is out there.

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Bill Felker has been writing nature columns and almanacs for regional and national publications since 1984. His Poor Will’s Almanack has appeared as an annual publication since 2003. His organization of weather patterns and phenology (what happens when in nature) offers a unique structure for understanding the repeating rhythms of the year.