Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.
(from To Autumn by John Keats)
There are not many poems to beat this one when it comes to describing Autumn.
The first verse of Keats' poem (above) conjures up a wonderful picture, ripe with colour and a scent that only an Autumn day can bring. Inhale deeply the clean crisp air, this season is far too short.
My favourite Autumn day begins early in the morning, waking to a light frost, the kind that makes mundane things sparkle in the weak sunlight and turns dross into silver. Slowly, as the sun warms the day, a light mist envelops the garden as the moisture from the melted frost evaporates. Leaving the house I can smell the delicious aroma of damp leaves and spent vegetation as I walk down the lane and across the field.
The air is crisp enough to make the end of my nose pink, and my eyes water, but I hasten my step and soon I am comfortably warm. Crows call from the tree tops, and somewhere a dog is barking as he greets the postman. Later, as I return home, the dampness is all but gone and along the lane I kick through the fallen leaves, they have a smell of their own, a blend as varied as their colours. Earthy, but sweet and mixed with the smoke from a gardener's bonfire. Perfection!