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Poor Will's Almanack: October 7 - 13, 2014

Christoph Kummer
Flickr Creative Commons

These days, I’m a little more confused than usual. Instead of feeling invigorated by this October, I'm feeling lethargic.

I bought this big load of wood the other day. It is filling up the entry to my yard and even blocking the sidewalk, but I don’t feel like stacking it. Years ago, I would so crazy things in the fall. October is the month in which I bought a dilapidated Jeep and planned to go Baja California. The jeep would never have made it. I bought my only motorcycle in the fall, but I never got it running. One autumn I decided to sell Fuller Brushes door to door. That went nowhere. Another year it was World Book Encyclopedias. I sold one set. And of course I always started my New Year’s lists about three months early.

Now, instead of my typical excitement and anticipation about autumn, in place of an urge to take stock and get ready for the cold, I'm experiencing a resignation and acceptance, a letting go of power instead of its collection, as though this winter were going to do something different to me than it usually does, as though I didn't need to fight it or resist it but let it blow over me and cover me up.

There doesn't seem to be anything ominous or morbid in my nonresistance. It feels simply like abandon, a state of the soul that has no thought or hope of spring or any repetition or rebirth, an abandon into an unforeseeable end of this cycle, allowing whatever outcome has been chosen, obeying, obliging with curiosity and peace.

Feels good!

This is Bill Felker with Poor Will’s Almanack. I’ll be back again next week with notes for the fourth week of early fall. In the meantime, don’t do anything stupid. It’s only October. No reason to get excited. Just let it happen.

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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.