Monday, November 12, 2012

The trees of late autumn

The weekend saw a lot of activity around my cabin—a raccoon was testing the strength of the chicken pen, the foxes were barking at each other nearby the cabin. I kept being awakened by Dog or Baby Dog telling me some predator was nearby. This morning the deer were out in evidence. One galloped right past me and Baby Dog on our early morning walk. I’m blaming it all on a short and warm respite from the blustery and chilly weather. I think I will be glad to have the colder weather return later today. Perhaps I’ll get more sleep.

The time of the brown woods of November is here. I don’t mind the pre-winter browns, as a rule. However, I’m vaguely worried that I will be sick of it before the winter snows fall. Since Hurricane Sandy shortened fall by forcing all the leaves off the trees, the woods are likely to remain this way for five or six weeks. It’s certainly possible I will see some snow before the end of the year, and in the pre-climate change years of not-that-long-ago, I could pretty much bank on that. But now? And after last year’s utter lack of post-October snow, I am suspicious that the nondescript and non-snowy browns will last and last and maybe even last longer than that. Should that be the case, I will be sick of it by then, whenever “then” turns out to be.

In the meantime I am not sick of the November browns, and in fact I’m still enjoying seeing the interesting shapes of tree trunks with the forest in its skeleton mode. The ones in this photo are mostly locust trees, and they are all bending towards the opening in the forest created by the narrow access road along which they sit. They are all bending to reach as much of the sun’s rays as they can. The trees and their leaning towards the open lane is not new, but when they are all leafed out, the leaning isn’t nearly so noticeable. For me, it’s a case of seeing anew what was there all the time. Maybe that’s part of the reason why I enjoy the pre-snowy, brown days of November. Even the familiar looks different. Just so it doesn’t last all winter.


Cathy said...

Agree, a little snow does help winter along. Even a dusting helps. Hope you get a good dusting real soon.

Scott said...

The bones of the forest, Caroline.

Kali and I raked up many trash-can loads of leaves last weekend (and hauled them to our compost heap), but there are still about as many yet to fall from the sycamore and mulberry behind the house, so I've still got a lot of "fall cleanup" to do here.