I watch a small blonde girl playing. She picks up a fallen leaf in each hand and studies them. She waves them over her head. She shreds one to see how small she can make the pieces. She skips and she laughs.
I was a small blonde girl once. I’m going out to play in the leaves. All work and no play is no good for anyone. It’s playtime.
The hedgerows are broadcasting the abundance of harvest-time, laden with hips and haws, sloes and blackberries. Yet the whirr of my wheels as I pedal along, and the grasshoppers in the long grass, still sing of lazy summer days. The sun paints a wash of late summer haze over the already-harvested fields, tinged with the unmistakable slant of autumn. Bronze, gold and brown mingle with the fading greens in the treetops.
Summer does not end. It slides into autumn, or autumn slides into it, subtly, without you noticing, until the crisp mornings become cold and the sunshine weakens and loses its warmth.
This isn’t the setting for a story.
This is the beautiful story.