October Reprise

“. . . the report of my death was an exaggeration.”  Mark Twain

It is late October and copious rainfall, mild temperatures, and a few sunny days have conspired to keep the garden green, glowing, and full of flowers.  I expected the garden to be withered with frost by now, an eerily beautiful place of spent flowers, blackened leaves, and winter weeds.  I had planned for it, in fact, complete with a melancholy video to document the season’s end. But when I went to record the demise of the garden with my cameras, I couldn’t find enough source material to make my point.  Still attached to this idea, my expectations got in the way of my observations and I felt frustrated and stuck.  Expecting an end, I found a reprise instead.

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A musical reprise is a repetition of an earlier theme or song with some changes that reflect the development of the narrative line.  The October garden certainly is in the middle of its reprise.  The end of the season is near; perhaps in days, a hard frost will claim its due.  But for the moment, the garden is repeating its performance of roses, zinnias, salvias, and ageratum amongst the autumn theme of goldenrod, asters, and grasses.  Plants are tall, blooms are colorful and fresh, and everything is swaying in the gusts of wind that leap up from nowhere, showering the beds with a flurry of colorful leaves.  A final flourish that has challenged my expectations and reminded me to pay attention to, and appreciate, the unanticipated beauty that is before me.

All text and images of “October Reprise” ©2011 Lynn Emberg Purse, All Rights Reserved