Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Fire of Autumn

Three weeks have passed since the trees looked like this, but since I have these photos to share, I'll take you back to late October, and the fire of autumn. Please remember to click to enlarge.

"Ho! for the leaves that eddy down,
Crumpled yellow and withered brown,
Hither and yonder and up the street
And trampled under the passing feet;
Swirling, billowing, drifting by,
With a whisper soft and a rustling sigh,
Starting aloft to windy ways,
Telling the coming of bonfire days."
~ Grace Strickler Dawson

"When the trees their summer splendor
Change to raiment red and gold,
When the summer moon turns mellow,
And the nights are getting cold;
When the squirrels hide their acorns,
And the woodchucks disappear;
Then we know that it is autumn,
Loveliest season of the year."
~ Carol L. Riser

"Autumn burned brightly,
a running flame through the mountains,
a torch flung to the trees."
~ Faith Baldwin

"It was one of those perfect English autumnal days which occur more frequently in memory than in life."
~ P. D. James

"I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as autumn sunshine by staying in the house. So I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air."
~ Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns."
~ George Eliot

"Autumn, the year's last, loveliest smile."
~ William Cullen Bryant

"Every leaf speaks bliss to me,
Fluttering from the autumn tree."
~ Emily Bronte

"The milkweed pods are breaking,
And the bits of silken down
Float off upon the autumn breeze
Across the meadows brown."
~ Cecil Cavendish

"A tangerine and russet cascade of kaleidoscopic leaves, creates a tapestry of autumn magic upon the emerald carpet of fading summer."
~ Judith A. Lindberg


Jinksy said...

Stunning palette of colours which make our Autumn pale into insignificance by comparison. What is your secret?!

Valerie said...

Lovely pictures, and now in the UK the autumn colour has left the trees, leaves piled high on the ground the only reminder of nature's colour scheme.

Tabor said...

our trees are now bare but I remember that autumn rusty beauty.

Tom said...

Beautiful pictures as ever, Hilary. I really miss those autumn colours!


Saz said...

those are so autumnal..they are lovely.....

Nessa said...

These are all so wonderful. I'd see one and say that's my favorite then I'd scroll down and there'd be another. Lovely.

Sunny Sunday #7 - Say a Sunny Thank-You

It's Sunday - Do You Know Where You Are?

Maggie May said...

Great photos as always. The colours are so intense.

We are having such strange weather here. Started to rain at the beginning of the week and it has poured down ever since. But it isn't cold. There have been floods in the North of England.
Today is watery slight sunshine.

Nuts in May

Unknown said...

Your lovely photos just made my day!

Would like to nominate the following for POTW, Hilary. I think you'll love if you haven't already seen it:


Woman in a Window said...

It is a gorgeous time, isn't it. But something is just coming to me now about the vulgarity of autumn. Forgive me. Just ideas flooding me that I didn't realize I had. Huh. Your pictures moved me that much. That is a good thing.

Hope you are well and out there tromping in the brittle spent of fall today.


Anonymous said...

So beautiful Hilary! There are still some fiery colours on PEI, but as I look out my backdoor, I see shades of grey in the woods. The photo of the duck is amazing, it's so colourful, almost looks painted doesn't it? :)

ellen abbott said...

The leaves are really magnificent but I liked the pictures of the berries and the milkweed pods best.

Jeni said...

Loved the pictures -especially the ones along the water. Just something about those scenes that grab me.
I think the trees -at least those around my house -are all almost completely bare now. I KNOW my daughter is hoping that the last of the leaves are down and raked up too!

Lori said...

What beautiful pictures! Did you take these near where you live? Now that our trees are bare I miss those beautiful colors.

Brian Miller said...

we went up to the Peaks about 2 weekes ago and found a patch of milkweed up on the mountain. the boys had so much fun chasing the milkweed as it floated on the breeze. thanks for bringing that back for me.

Crabby McSlacker said...

Beautiful! We still have some autumn colors in California, but I could never capture them the way you have. Thanks for posting these!

abb said...

Such beauty! Love that wood duck. We've not had one grace our pond yet this year. :(

Unknown said...

wow, so beautiful. perhaps by taking us back in time you will slow down time...

it is going too fast...

much love

Zuzana said...

I love to revisit the autumn and no one shows its beauty as well as you do.;) Lovely pictures Hilary,

Dianne said...

autumn fire indeed!
the quotes are so well matched to your exceptional photos
Mother Nature smiles whenever you take a photo :)

G said...

These quotes (and the pictures of course) are magical, and many of them I've not read before. Thank you for sharing them. :)

Unknown said...

This was a beautiful post that made me feel as if I were walking along on tour with you noticing the seasonal colors, Hilary. Very nicely done!:)

Hilary said...

• Thank you, Jinsky. The secret must be in the cold. stark winter which follows. We need something warm and bright to keep us going through the months ahead. Aside from belly-warmers, that is. ;) Thanks for stopping by, my friend. :)

• Thanks, Valerie. It's pretty much like that here too. These photos go back a few weeks. It sure was a fine season, though. Thanks so much for the visit. :)

• Tabor, it's been a wonderful autumn. A great one to remember, eh? Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Tom, just looking at your beautiful sunset photos makes me miss summer, and I can only imagine how wonderful it is where you are, but I would miss autumn too, if I didn't get to see these wonderful changes. Thanks so much for your kind words. :)

• Thanks kindly, Saz. Much appreciated. :)

• Nesaa thanks for such a kind comment. I'm glad you enjoyed them. :)

• Thanks very much, Maggie. We've had a wonderfully warm November this year, so I know what you mean about how unusual the season is. Sorry to hear that there's flooding though. That's not good. Thanks for your always-kind words. :)

• Jane, thanks so much for the very kind words. I hadn't yet seen Janine's blog post but I have now noted it for Wednesday's post. Thanks very much. :)

• Thank you, Erin. there's certainly a feeling of death and decay that is autumn but I'm not sure I'd have seen it as a vulgarity. Your words always bring images to life. I'm glad that my images have brought some of your thoughts to life. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks kindly, Rain. Yes, it's becoming rather dull here now too, though some life still clings to the branches. And the occasional garden still produces flowers.. it's been that mild. The wood duck does indeed look like a painted creature. He's a beauty, eh? Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks very much, Ellen. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, Jeni. I quite like that particular spot along the pond's edge too. It veers away from the actual walking path and very few people tend to walk it. It's a bit more difficult to maneuver but it yields some lovely scenes to photograph. I'm glad you enjoyed them. They're all pretty much bare here now too.. and I hear you about the raking! Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Smiles4U, thanks very much for the kind words. All of the photos except for the milkweed were taken around my local park just a few steps from home. The last shot was near Frank's place. Thanks so much for stopping by. :)

• Brian, I'm really glad that my photos brought memories of a fun time for your family. Thanks for stopping by to let me know. :)

• Crabby, thanks very much for the always-kind words. Very much appreciated. :)

• Thanks, TSannie. This guy (at least I assume it's the same one) stops by in spring and in autumn for the past couple of years. He's the only one among a flock of Mallards and tries to pair up with one of their females, much to the drakes' distaste. He is a very cool critter though, so I suppose they tolerate him. ;) Thanks for stopping by and for the kind words. :)

• Thanks, Stacey. Sometimes it does feel that way during the finer seasons. But it rarely feels like that during the cold months of winter. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Zuzana, thanks so much for your always-warm comments. You never fail to make me smile, dear friend. :)

• Dianne, thank you so kindly. Your sweet comment just made my day. Thanks for that. :)

• BPG, thanks very much. I'm glad you enjoyed the quotes. :)

• Michael, thanks so much for the very kind words. I'm so glad that you joined me for the this walk. I sure enjoyed having you along. :)

blunoz said...

I love the photos of the orange trees, and I particularly love the photo of the woodland duck. That's spectacular!

Shammickite said...

Lovely colours, but they are all fading to browns and beiges and greys now, but still beautiful. And soon white....

steviewren said...

The shot of the duck is like a painting. I love the shadows on the water and the color variations on his feathers.

Sniffles and Smiles said...

You are simply a brilliant photographer!!!! I am reveling in the color and composition of this post...a beautiful taste of my favorite season!!! And the poetry and literary flair of the words that you have woven throughout? Perfection! But of course I love it...the Bryant words have long been a favorite..."Autumn, the year's last, loveliest smile.." Truly. A beautiful start to my week! ~Janine XO

L. D. said...

The entire stock of photos are wonderful. But I was taken back when I saw the photo of the wood duck. That is wonderful. They are one of my favorites naturally colored bird. Thanks for sharing them all.

Wendy said...

What a colourful collection of autumn pics! I like how you started us off on the pathway...

Our trees are quite bare, as are yours, so this was a treat! I like your wood duck. I don't think I've seen any here. Mostly mallards, but they are nice too.
Have a good week!

Kathleen said...

Thank you for turning back time with these enchanting photos and quotes. . . I would do as George Eliot would. Sigh . . .

Andrew said...

I am always speechless... What a beautiful place, and terrific photos!

Jackie said...

Your photographs are spectacular!
What a pleasure to visit here...
(I came from Eddie's blog and saw your POD on his sidebar.)
Smiles from Jackie

LadyFi said...

Ah - a lovely nourishing post!

SandyCarlson said...

Mmm, mmm good. A tonic for the soul, this post. Thank you, Hilary.

maddie said...

Those are beautiful photos. I especially liked the third one from last. Everything is wet and sludgy here. But at least we have the beauty of log fires and cosy nights in to keep us happy. x

Russell said...

Enjoyed all the images, but especially enjoyed the vivid oak leaves along with the Emily Bronte quote.

I have always been quite interested in the Bronte sisters -- such talent! And their brother, too. Yet, at the same time, such tragedy for one family. Perhaps it was the combination of brillance and tragedy that helped produce such great literature.

On the other hand, perhaps it was such brilliance that created the tragedy. It is all quite a mystery.

Regardless, certainly enjoyed these images. Fall is my favorite season.

Boozy Tooth said...


Those images are so breathtaking, it's hard to believe that much beauty exists effortlessly in nature. And you captured it in all it's splendor. I love autumn more than any other season and was able to enjoy the changing of the leaves at their peak last month in upstate New York. What a gift! Thank you for these amazing stirring photographs.

Thank you also for visiting Casa Hice and for leaving a comment about my Sunday Roast over at Eddie Bluelights'. What an honor! I appreciate your contributing to my fabulous experience. Now I'm off to subscribe to your beautiful blog and look forward to visiting often!


Mental P Mama said...

All too wonderful...especially the Hawthorne quote and the duck;)

Daryl said...

Yummy ..

Anonymous said...

Poetry and your photographs never fail to bless my day.

photowannabe said...

Stunning colors Hilary. Our trees are still doing their thing and as I sit here looking out the window I see the sun shining like a spotlight on the red trees in my front yard. God's paintbrush is magnificient.

Anita said...

Those are just the best photos!
I enlarged as you suggested and I could practically feel myself walking the path and sitting on the bench. Fall is SO beautiful.

Hilary said...

• Thanks so much, Kevin. I'm glad you like them. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Shammie, yes. They're pretty much done now but quit implying that S word on my blog! ;) Thanks for the visit. :)

• Steviewren, I'd love to see what your talented eye, hand paint brush would do with that wood duck. Thanks so much for stopping by. :)

• Janine, thank you so much for such incredibly kind words. I'm so pleased that you enjoyed my photos and the quotes that I chose. Your warm comment made my day. Thanks for that. :)

• Thanks kindly, LD. We're lucky to have this wood duck visit for a few weeks, a couple of times a year. Of course I don't know for sure that he's the same one but he's always alone and tries to pair up with a female mallard. Cool birds, aren't they? Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, Wendy. I'm so glad you joined me on my walk along the path and that you enjoyed the sights. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Kathleen, I'm happy that you enjoyed stepping backwards in time for just a few weeks. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Andrew, you must be. I'm not sure I've seen you drop by before. Welcome! And thanks very much for your very kind words. I hope you'll speak up more often. :)

• Welcome, Jackie/Teacher's Pet and thank you so much for you warm comment. I'm glad you followed the link from Eddie's blog and sure hope you'll be back soon and often. :)

• Thanks, LadyFi. Much appreciated. :)

• Thank YOU, Sandy. You always make me smile with your kind words. :)

• Thanks kindly, Maddie. I'm glad you liked the photos. I am sorry to see autumn go.. mostly because of that other season which follows, but that too can be pretty cozy like you said. Thanks for stopping by with your kind words. :)

• Thanks, Russell. I love how you can practically write a blog post based on just one photo or quote. It's what makes you so interesting to read. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Alix, thank you so much for your very kind words. I'm happy for you that you were able to be in upstate NY, of all places, to enjoy this season's finest. It truly is a treat to live in our climate. I'm glad we've connected and we have Eddie to thank for that (Thanks, Eddie!). Thanks again for stopping by. :)

• MPM, thanks kindly. I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

• Daryl.. not the duck! ;)

• Thank you so much for that, KC. You never fail to bring a smile to my face. :)

• Sue, I could be a tad envious of your continued autumn, but that would be greedy of me. I'm glad you're enjoying the season's spendour. And I know that you'll be out there with your camera, and soon sharing it with us. Thanks always for stopping by. :)

• Anita, thank you for the very kind words and for joining me on my walk. I enjoyed having you along. :)

Deb Shucka said...

The wood duck is my favorite! How can something so glorious be real? Your photography is amazing.

Midlife Roadtripper said...

The milk pods - my favorite.

Joanna Jenkins said...

WOW, WOW, WOW!!! Those pictures are stunning. The colors are so vibrant and that duck barely looks real! These are perfect examples of why I miss Fall so much (living in S. Calif.)

Thanks for the pics! They made my day.


solarity said...

They're all beautiful. The third one from the top is my favorite: I love that double curve around the water. Then there's the duck to remind us that leaves aren't the only color in fall.

Mary Anne in Kentucky

Woman in a Window said...

(i wrote that poem out then. on my back door. you don't have to go, really, but thought i'd let you know. poor fall.)
much love

MaggieGem said...

Wonderful autumn pictures Hilary! I like them all, but really love the duck :-)

Thanks for dropping by This Life Thru the Lens it's always to a pleasure to share my outings.

Anonymous said...

The pictures are absolutely gorgeous. Here in Texas it seems that fall hasn't really come and stayed. The leaves are just now starting to turn and fall- that's one of the reasons I miss the North- you actually have seasons. :)

Cloudia said...


Aloha, Friend!

Comfort Spiral

Dave said...

Beautiful autumn photos and wonderful words Hilary. Thanks. - Dave

Anonymous said...

I'm back! I'm married now and have a wonderful wife... she started a blog, Lady of Wellington.
As always you have the most beautiful pictures on your post.
I hope we can reconnect here. So good to see you are still on your blog. You probably thought I'd die, like others, I'm sure.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving... I don't know if you celebrate that or not with it being a USA holiday. Anyway, hope you have a great day!
The Bach

Jo said...

Omigoodness, I LOVE the duck. I would love to do a painting of that duck. Wonderful...!!!

Gosh, I miss autumn already. :-)

ethelmaepotter! said...

I have no words for the beauty of this post...both the photos and the prose.
The teal duck...the cluster of berries...the incredible colors...the lonely picnic table...all lovely, just lovely.
You have such a talent...thank you so much for sharing, so that all the world may enjoy.

Hilary said...

• Thanks, Deb. He's a great-looking little critter, isn't he? Like a floating box of Crayolas. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• MJ, I'm glad you like them. Thanks for the visit. :)

• JJ, Thanks so much for the very kind words. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos though I wish they hadn't made you feel homesick. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thank you, Mary Anne. I'm pleased that you enjoyed these pics. Your warm comment is very much appreciated. Thanks for the visit. :)

• Erin, thanks for letting me know. It's a fine poem. Leave it to you to have this perspective. :)

• Thanks very kindly, Maggie. You always evoke a smile when you drop by. :)

• Thanks very much, E. You're right about our seasons up here. I may complain about winter's cold but I sure do love the changes which happen from one season to the next. Thanks so much for the visit. :)

• Thank you and Aloha, Cloudia. :)

• Thanks, Dave. I'm glad you approve. Much appreciated. :)

• Hey, Bach! Congratulations on your marriage and welcome back to blogging. It's nice to see you back in blogging circulation and happily out of bachelor circulation. Thanks so much for your very kind words. Happy Thanksgiving to you - our Canadian turkey day was last month. :)

• He's quite the beauty eh, Jo? Please let me know if you do decide to paint him. I'd sure love to see the finished work. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Aww, EthelMae you're good for my ego. Thank you so much for the very kind compliments. That means so much to me. Thanks always for the visit. :)

Fragrant Liar said...

Loveliest season indeed. Beautiful shots. Oh to be in the middle of all that Fall.

cheshire wife said...

What glorious colours you have or had! It is such a pity that they do not last very long.

San said...

Hilary, all of these photos dazzle, but in particular I'm drawn to the lakeside path. I love the trees leaning over the shimmering water--as though they want to touch each other.

Great quote pairings too.

Tammie Lee said...

thank you for the stroll through Autumns beautiful colors! The quotes were wonderful too!

Lulda Casadaga said...

Just wonderful as always! I love P.D. James and we should all use that mantra from Nataniel Hawthorne... :)

Thumbelina said...

Beautiful Hilary. I love the verse that you match with it too. Autumn is by far the most beautiful season and sadly, the shortest lived. But you have captured it here forever for us. Thank you.

ds said...

So beautiful. Thank you. I especially like the wood duck (or is it a mandarin?)and the Faith Baldwin photo.Oh, and the carpet of orange leaves...

Maria said...

You captured an amazing collection of snaps of autumn beauty. The duck picture is my particular favourite because of the colour scheme....

Anonymous said...

Hilary, this is just gorgeous. I always adore the words you post with your photos. LOVELY!

Hilary said...

• Welcome, Fragrant Liar and thanks very much for the kind words. I love your nickname. I hope you'll be back for a return visit soon. :)

• Cheshire Wife, this autumn was indeed particularly beautiful and did seem to last a bit longer than usual. I'm grateful for that and for your visit. :)

• San, THanks so much for your kind words. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos. I love that part of the pond for exactly that reason. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Welcome, Tammie Lee and thanks for the kind comment. I'm glad you could join me and hope that you will again soon. :)

• Lulda, thank you. I'm glad you liked it. Much appreciated. :)

• Thanks kindly, Thumbelina. Your always-sweet comments make me smile. I'm glad you enjoyed the post. Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks so much, DS. That is a wood duck. We did have a Mandarin stop by for a few days about two years ago. I never got a shot of it but one of my neighbours did. He was a beauty - the duck.. not the neighbour. ;) Thanks for stopping by. :)

• Thanks very much Gaelikaa. That wood duck sure is the popular choice. His colours are pretty incredible, aren't they? Thanks always for your very kind words. :)

• Thanks kindly, Meredith. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Much appreciated. :)

Anonymous said...

Such beautiful photographs, thank you for sharing them.

CJ xx

Merisi said...

Thank you for showing these great images of your red and tangerine and golden autumn leaves! I also enjoyed the autumn prose, thank you. ;-)

Hilary said...

• CJ, thanks very kindly. Much appreciated. :)

• Merisi, thanks so much for the very kind words. I'm glad you enjoyed the photos and quotes. :)

Louise said...

Glorious, indeed! But that 4th picture with the yellow tree, dark trunks and blue water. Breathtaking!

Hilary said...

Thanks so much, Louise. Boy, when you catch up, you really go back a few posts. That's very much appreciated. Thank you. :)