Fall Is Almost Here!
n. a wistful omen of the first sign of autumn — a subtle coolness in the shadows, a rustling of dead leaves abandoned on the sidewalk, or a long skein of geese sweeping over your head like the second hand of a clock.
— From The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows, by John Koenig
As autumn approaches, the geese in my area are already flying south in droves, passing through the light blue sky in their signature V shape, the honking peanut gallery in the back loudly encouraging those in the lead. The burning bushes in the front yard started to turn a month ago, daytime temperatures have settled from the summer’s horrific heat, and the air has become softer, easier to breathe.
This is my favorite time of year, when the sun hangs lower in the sky and emits an easy-going golden glow. It coaxes the trees to put on a glorious show as their leaves peak before a massive but gentle letting go.
For me, fall marks a time of turning inward — even more so than I usually do. I am more alive in the fall, more at peace, more willing to just be. I’m at my happiest walking outdoors and letting Mother Nature massage me with temperatures that are juuuuust right and winds that rustle the leaves and play with my hair. Indoors, I’m wrapped up in a blankie with the fireplace going, a warm mug of chai nearby, and a book in hand while darkness meets the sunlight hours a little earlier each day. This is my wonderland.
In anticipation of the season, I thumbed through my collection of quotes about fall and picked out some of my favorites to share with you. Some are old and worn — almost clichés — but still dear to my heart. All of them evoke the sights, sounds, tastes, smells, and touches of autumn.
Here they are, in alphabetical order by author:
There is something so special in the early leaves drifting from the trees–as if we are all to be allowed a chance to peel, to refresh, to start again.
— Ruth Ahmed, When Ali Met Honour
It looked like the world was covered in a cobbler crust of brown sugar and cinnamon.
— Sarah Addison Allen, First Frost
Her pleasure in the walk must arise from the exercise and the day, from the view of the last smiles of the year upon the tawny leaves and withered hedges, and from repeating to herself some few of the thousand poetical descriptions extant of autumn — that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence on the mind of taste and tenderness — that season which has drawn from every poet worthy of being read some attempt at description, or some lines of feeling.
— Jane Austen, Persuasion
Autumn burned brightly, a running flame through the mountains, a torch flung to the trees.
— Faith Baldwin, American Family
Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree.
— Emily Brontë, “Fall, Leaves, Fall”
How beautifully leaves grow old. How full of light and color are their last days.
— John Burroughs
Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.
— Albert Camus
Aprils have never meant much to me, autumns seem that season of beginning, spring.
— Truman Capote, Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Three Stories
The first breath of autumn was in the air, a prodigal feeling, a feeling of wanting, taking, and keeping before it is too late.
— J. L. Carr, A Month In the Country
Let autumn leaves fall to the depth of my soul, a reminder to live with wisdom aglow.
— Angie Weiland Crosby
Autumn is full of ripeness, of life with a unique, mellow beauty. It’s punctuated by brilliance. Fall has always been my favorite season. The time when everything bursts with its last beauty, as if nature had been saving up all year for the grand finale.
— Lauren Destefano
I can smell autumn dancing in the breeze. The sweet chill of pumpkin, and crisp sunburnt leaves.
— Ann Drake
Is this not a true autumn day? Just the still melancholy that I love — that makes life and nature harmonize.
— George Eliot
Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.
— Nora Ephron
Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.
— F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
The leaves are all falling, and they’re falling like they’re falling in love with the ground.
— Andrea Gibson
I cannot endure to waste anything so precious as autumnal sunshine by staying in the house.
— Nathaniel Hawthorne, The American Notebooks
The heat of autumn is different from the heat of summer. One ripens the apples, the other turns them to cider.
— Jane Hirshfield, “The Heat of Autumn”
Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all.
— Stanley Horowitz
But when fall comes, kicking summer out on its treacherous ass as it always does one day sometime after the midpoint of September, it stays awhile like an old friend that you have missed. It settles in the way an old friend will settle into your favorite chair and take out his pipe and light it and then fill the afternoon with stories of places he has been and things he has done since last he saw you.
— Stephen King, ‘Salem’s Lot
Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn.
— Elizabeth Lawrence
I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.
— L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
I notice that autumn is more the season of the soul than of nature.
— Friedrich Nietzche
Autumn leaves don’t fall, they fly. They take their time and wander on this their only chance to soar.
— Delia Owens, Where the Crawdads Sing
At no other time (than autumn) does the earth let itself be inhaled in one smell, the ripe earth; in a smell that is in no way inferior to the smell of the sea, bitter where it borders on taste, and more honeysweet where you feel it touching the first sounds. Containing depth within itself, darkness, something of the grave almost.
— Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters on Cézanne
October, baptize me with leaves! Swaddle me in corduroy and nurse me with split pea soup. October, tuck tiny candy bars in my pockets and carve my smile into a thousand pumpkins. O autumn! O teakettle! O grace!
— Rainbow Rowell, Attachments
Spring is beautiful, and summer is perfect for vacations, but autumn brings a longing to get away from the unreal things of life, out into the forest at night with a campfire and the rustling leaves.
— Margaret Elizabeth Sangster, “The Gipsy Spirit,” Friends O’ Mine
Anyone who thinks fallen leaves are dead has never watched them dancing on a windy day.
— Shira Tamir
And I rose / In rainy autumn / And walked abroad in a shower of all my days…
— Dylan Thomas, Collected Poems
I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.
— Henry David Thoreau, Walden
The trees are about to show us how lovely it is to let the dead things go.
And all the lives we ever lived and all the lives to be are full of trees and changing leaves.
— Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse
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