Fall-ing Through Change, Heading For Winter

Sunrise 11-12-14

Written by Terri Crosby for In Care of Relationships

Every day, in every way the leaves are falling, swirling, plummeting past my window as winter approaches.   Yesterday morning, the valley below us was filled with mist, and hundreds of leaves were falling, down, down, down into the mist below.  It was surreal.  On one recent blustery day as I walked with Jackson (dog) on our country road which is flanked on both sides with tall trees, thousands of  leaves “rained” on us.  It was positively heavenly.

Jackson and Blue Flowers May 2011In this change-of-seasons time, in my world, the perfect thing to do is read a little Mary Oliver.   She helps me get from one place to another, from one state of mind to another.   And since even we in the more southern part of the country have had our first snow, what a perfect poem for this time of year.

If you don’t know Mary Oliver, she is a true treasure.  She is an American poet who has won the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize.  She is often referred to as America’s best selling poet.   Her first collection of poems, No Voyage and Other Poems, was published in 1963, when she was 28.  Her fifth collection of poetry, American Primitive, won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1984.  She continues to write at the happy age of 79.

So after you read the poem, what I would love to know from you is what “change-of season” experiences do you go through?  What do you notice about your personal transition from Fall to Winter?  Please feel free to make a comment below.

First Snow by Mary Oliver

The snow
began here
this morning and all day
continued, its white
rhetoric everywhere
calling us back to why, how,
whence such beauty and what
the meaning, such
an oracular fever! flowing
past windows, an energy it seemed
would never ebb, never settle
less than lovely! and only now,
deep into night,
it has finally ended.
The silence
is immense,
and the heavens still hold
a million candles; nowhere
the familiar things:
stars, the moon,
the darkness we expect
and nightly turn from.  Trees
glitter like castles
of ribbons, the broad fields
smolder with light, a passing
creekbed lies
heaped with shining hills;
and though the questions
that have assailed us all day
remain—not a single
answer has been found—
walking out now
into the silence and the light
under the trees,
and through the fields,
feels like one.

autumn-winter 2


For more information about In Care of Relationships, click here.

Fall Light PatternsAbout Terri Crosby — I live in the Blue Ridge Mountains with Eric, my partner of 14 years, two cats and a dog, and as many flowers and vegetables as I can plant.

It is my experience that children are born to teach (remind) parents, not the other way around.   I’ve learned more from my daughter MacKenzie than from all other humans combined.

I’m in favor of wandering time in the morning, listening to the birds calling to each other in the woods all around me.

Making fresh food is one of life’s big yummy pleasures, along with singing – especially creating heavenly, improvisational, prayerful, meditational sound.

I believe that poet Mary Oliver writes the best bedtime stories available on Earth.


changes, changing seasons, fall, In Care of Relationships, Mary Oliver, Pulitzer Prize, relationship, relationships, Terri Crosby, winter

Comments (4)

  • Lovely Terri! I watch the final leaves fall outside the window and know that Winter is approaching. I will miss the snowglobe of my old home and I will find new peace, wonder and beauty in my new one.

  • The biggest transition is from outside to inside. As winter approaches daylight becomes a brief affair and the temperature follows the sun which leaves my nook of the world a bit earlier.
    I have, over the years. found living in the now of nature to be easier .

    • Shiner, yes, everything’s more inner in the winter! As I sit with my hot cup of tea this morning, I find that I become heat seeking in the winter, and it’s good if the heat lands INto me. :–) Whatever’s warm is winter-good!

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