Winds of change have been blowing white cottony clouds low across the blue sky all week. Hurricanes are brewing in the ocean far away. The old hens are looking molty and tattered, and one by one the huge orb weaver spiders that wove golden webs around the kitchen eaves are disappearing.
In the dry afternoons everywhere there is rustling in all the fallen leaves, until the daily looming storm clouds suddenly hush the bright sun just before the patter of rain.
Over the weekend the damp and the heat and all the lank, rank weeds everywhere felt oppressive, and I went weeding my way through the flower and herb beds, wishing I had winter’s fingers of frost that clear away the overgrown weeds of the fall.
The pigs are in the garden again, their destructive strength channeled into tearing apart the tall, woody weeds and exposing the dark soil underneath, ready for planting. I don’t know what i would do without them.
This change of seasons brings its own challenges. Clearing away the old garden and making way for the new must be timed just right to avoid a hunger gap. Too soon and the fall plants grow too slowly in the heat, but waiting too long means the long season cool weather plants are behind.
I love the new little plants, the hopeful phase of their little leaves reaching to the sky, but it’s harder to make the end-of-season call. Behind the face of change is death, and I am sentimental about tearing out even half dead plants if it looks like they are setting fruit.
Right now I have been very much contemplating these forces of ending, the necessary change of stepping forward as our old kitty of 17 years lay suddenly dying.
A few days ago she stopped eating, and then drinking. We made her comfortable as she curled up sleeping and slowly drifting away.
Teasel first came to live with me when she was 8 weeks old, and I was 18. She was there before my children, before my husband, her quirky and interesting personality always present every day of my life since I was grown up.
Seeing her leave us, I feel like a part of who I am is leaving too. She is deaf and senile and grouchy and worn out and old. It is time for her to step forward to something new, but it is still always so hard to let go of someone we love, even when the time has come.