Sentient in San Francisco – 23 September 2019: The First Day of Autumn

Greeting Autumn

Below – Joe Starkey: “Autumn Equinox”

Art for Autumn – Egon Schiele: “Four Trees”


A Poem for Autumn

“To Autumn”
by John Keats

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.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,–
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft,
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

Art for Autumn – David Hockney: “Woldgate Woods”

A Poem for Autum

“Nothing Gold Can Stay”
by Robert Frost

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.


Art for Autumn – Vincent van Gogh: “Landscape with Trees”


Musings in Autumn: Albert Camus

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”


Art for Autumn – Pierre Bonnard: “Autumn View”

A Poem for Autumn

“Sonnet 73”
by William Shakespeare

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruin’d choirs where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou seest the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west,
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death’s second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou seest the glowing of such fire
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the death-bed whereon it must expire,
Consum’d by that which it was nourished by.
This thou perceiv’st which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

Art for Autumn – Edward Hopper: “October on Cape Cod”


A Poem for Autumn

“End of Summer”
by Stanley Kunitz

An agitation of the air,
A perturbation of the light
Admonished me the unloved year
Would turn on its hinge that night.

I stood in the disenchanted field
Amid the stubble and the stones,
Amazed, while a small worm lisped to me
The song of my marrow-bones.

Blue poured into summer blue,
A hawk broke from his cloudless tower,
The roof of the silo blazed, and I knew
That part of my life was over.

Already the iron door of the north
Clangs open: birds, leaves, snows
Order their populations forth,
And a cruel wind blows.


Art for Autumn – Katsushika Hokusai: “Peasants in Autumn”


Musings in Autumn: Friedrich Nietzsche

“I notice that Autumn is more the season of the soul than of nature.”

Art for Autumn – Paul Gauguin: “Landscape in Arles near the Alyscamps”


A Poem for Autumn

“Beyond the Red River”
by Thomas McGrath

The birds have flown their summer skies to the south,
And the flower-money is drying in the banks of bent grass
Which the bumble bee has abandoned. We wait for a winter lion,
Body of ice-crystals and sombrero of dead leaves.

A month ago, from the salt engines of the sea,
A machinery of early storms rolled toward the holiday houses
Where summer still dozed in the pool-side chairs, sipping
An aging whiskey of distances and departures.

Now the long freight of autumn goes smoking out of the land.
My possibles are all packed up, but still I do not leave.
I am happy enough here, where Dakota drifts wild in the universe,
Where the prairie is starting to shake in the surf of the winter dark.

Art for Autumn – Gustav Klimt: “Birch Forest”

A Poem for Autumn

“Final Autumn”
by Annie French

Maple leaves turn black in the courtyard.
Light drives lower and one bluejay crams
our cold memories out past the sun,

each time your traces come past the shadows
and visit under my looking-glass fingers
that lift and block out the sun.

Come—I’ll trace you one final autumn,
and you can trace your last homecoming
into the snow or the sun.

Below – Tahirih Goffic: “Waiting”

Art for Autumn – Claude Monet: “Autumn on the Seine at Argenteuil”


Musings in Autumn: Sara Teasdale

“The leaves fall patiently
Nothing remembers or grieves
The river takes to the sea
The yellow drift of leaves.”

Below – Bryan Roberts: “Floating Leaves”


Art for Autumn – Georgia O’Keeffe: “Autumn Leaves”

A Poem for Autumn

“The Beautiful Changes”
by Richard Wilbur

One wading a Fall meadow finds on all sides
The Queen Anne’s Lace lying like lilies
On water; it glides
So from the walker, it turns
Dry grass to a lake, as the slightest shade of you
Valleys my mind in fabulous blue Lucernes.

The beautiful changes as a forest is changed
By a chameleon’s tuning his skin to it;
As a mantis, arranged
On a green leaf, grows
Into it, makes the leaf leafier, and proves
Any greenness is deeper than anyone knows.

Your hands hold roses always in a way that says
They are not only yours; the beautiful changes
In such kind ways,
Wishing ever to sunder
Things and things’ selves for a second finding, to lose
For a moment all that it touches back to wonder.


Art for Autumn – Childe Hassam: “Autumn Boulevard”

Welcome, Wonderful Autumn

Below – Tom Thomson: “Autumn Foliage”

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