My walking sojourns, started as part of a fitness routine, are now a weekend highlight. It’s an opportunity to keep track of the seasons; to listen to the loopy trill of a Common Yellowthroat in the scrub on the side of a field or the incessant buzz and squeak of fledgling Catbirds, Titmice, Cardinals and Blue Jays. It’s the time of year to bump up production of hummingbird solution to over half a gallon a week to satisfy the local population. They all give me hope of another year of life to come.
We are treading on the spine of summer. Here is nature’s embroidery at its finest: the French knots of Queen Anne ’s lace flirts with the sky blue of chicory. Across the road, persimmon day lilies wave in the breeze like so many fans at a music concert. Necklaces of milkweed leaves offer larder to larvae for another generation of Monarch butterflies. Sunlight is dropping off the edge of the earth one moment at a time as the earth tilts toward autumn. I used to dread the coming darkness but now welcome the soft shadows of dusk to chase away the sweltering humidity of this season.
Everything green and growing is on an all out assault to the light to get its life in before going out in a blaze of September glory. Seed heads are swelling. There are reports of early migrating birds making their way back down the New Jersey coastline on their return migration to Central and South America. Whimbrels, Short-billed Dowitchers, Lesser Yellowlegs, Worm-eating and Yellow Warblers all on their way.
The earth is turning. Nothing stays the same for long, including you and me.