Osage Orange
Ellyn B. / Flickr Creative Commons

The Sun’s passage from Libra to Scorpio on Cross-Quarter Day October 23 opens the hinge of Middle Autumn and initiates the most dramatic period of leaf fall. Throughout this final stage of the natural year, the landscape becomes fully primed for the new signs and seasons to come.

As the days shorten, the effects of the weakening sun are easily seen in the collapse of almost all the foliage. Smaller changes also offer measure of Scorpio. The low trills of the field crickets become slow, then rare.

fall leaves
Jay Joslin / Flickr Creative Commons

The canopy of leaves appeared solid throughout the hot summer, its entire nature dense and uniform, its shade thick and deep. Within a few days, that canopy will shatter deep into the jug of autumn. That jug, that earthen container takes it all.

Everything from the whole year past goes into the jug of October. Events and objects get mixed up in the tumble. The smooth wall of June is torn apart. The heat of July and August is filtered and cooled. All of the long green horizon crumbles.

The best sense of what we are in this place dissolves.

Cedar Bog Nature Preserve in Urbana

If you go up north to the Cedar Bog there is a non-scary night walk on the boardwalk called Boo in the Bog. It’s a non-scary night walk with learning stations along the way. Enjoy children's activities, face painting, storytelling and food. You can go there tonight and Saturday 7 to 9pm.

cardinal on bird feeder
Scott Thomas / Flickr Creative Commons

One summer a few years ago, I spent so much time sitting on the back patio just looking out into the garden. Every few days the blossoms of the shrubs and flowers changed. I filled the bird feeders every morning, and the birds rewarded my care with their presence.

Lounging on the patio, I saw more butterflies than I ever had before,  watched more bees than I had ever watched before – hover bees, carpenter bees, bumblebees, bee flies, and even a few honeybees.

I loved it.

Wagner Subaru Outdoor Experience

If you’re a tinkerer, crafter, engineer or manufacturer and if you like to make stuff with your hands, the Make It Dayton Festival is for you. It’s at Dayton History’s Carillon Historical Park on Saturday and it will be a gathering of tinkerers, crafters, engineers and hobbyists who reflect Dayton’s heritage of invention and manufacturing.

crab apple
Heather Kaiser / Flickr Creative Commons

Yesterday, I went walking, found seed heads everywhere, dry rose petals, red rose hips I should have pruned, withered hydrangea blossoms covered in spiderwebs, Joe Pye weed bushy and brown like the burdock beside it, three blue spiderwort flowers blossoming out of season, hops heavy across the euonymous, oodles of black redbud seeds like manes in the branches, the soft green seeds of the fierce wood nettle, new waterleaf leaves, mottled grape vines, red crab apples bigger than I'd ever noticed before, stiff and prickly burrs of purple coneflowers, the unusual brightness of honeysuckle berr

Oktoberfest is this weekend at Dayton Art Institute.
courtesy of the Dayton Art Institute

If you are interested in automobiles there is an auction of 30 cars and more than 350 lots of memorabilia and collectibles. This is the Taj Ma Garaj Auction in downtown Dayton on Saturday at 10am.

Theo Crazzolara / Flickr Creative Commons

This past weekend, I drove south through the full range of early fall, its different subseasons depending on the progress of the soybeans or corn or goldenrod or tobacco, depending on whether harvest complete or pending, depending on which trees were turning and how far.

Salem Avenue Peace Corridor

The Dayton Metro Library have a used book sale at the West Carrollton Branch Library today, 3 to 8pm, and Saturday, 10am to 5pm.

EQUIP: Christianity & the Arts is a gallery of works by local Christian artists. They are having a Children’s Art Program and a Roundtable Conversation with the artists and at 4pm is a Choral Evensong. This is at St. George’s Episcopal Church in Kettering on Saturday, 1 to 5pm.

fall leaf
compassrose_04 / Flickr Creative Commons

The time of early fall is an ambivalent time, a time of being on the edge. Summer is not really gone, but foliage is aging quickly and flowers are disappearing. The days may be warm and humid, but the sun is a March sun and could rise to frost on any morning.

I experience a vague excitement now, am in suspense as to just when the wind will change, look forward to the cold, feel relief at the end of the Dog Days, but I also wish that the season did not have to change so quickly.