Harvest Moon

Under the front window where I sit, the pumpkin vines are taking over my flower bed and creeping amid the rusting rose bushes and  last, brave geraniums. If we’re lucky, the egg-sized pumpkins might actually be softball size and maybe even orange by next month. The lawn is still emerald green and cries to be mowed, but since school started, I haven’t been able to light a fire hot enough under Jeffrey to actually get him out there. The stitched flag on the porch has blown and caught itself in the sunflowers by the front door, and they sway and tangle together in the breeze. Is that disrespectful, letting my flag dance with my sunflowers? I think it’s okay.

The washing machine is churning away in the basement, stoically chewing through the casualties of teaching a little girl to sleep without a diaper, and piles of fresh-smelling kids clothes fill plastic baskets near my feet. I’m ignoring the piles of t-shirts and grass-kneed jeans for now, but I know they are patient and will always always always be waiting for me.

My nose is cold. I tuck my hands under my laptop now and then to warm them on it’s little electronic apple-heart. It’s that time of year where the mornings are still chilly, but by afternoon, everyone is pink cheeked and covered in a sheet of sweat from hard playing. Too cool for the fans, too warm for the heater. Instead I grab a zippered sweatshirt from the back of my closet, and begin the annual rotation of the clothing. Soon enough it will be parkas, boots and missing stocking caps.

Today is the first day of classes at the University. My syllabi and calenders are printed, folders labeled and books perused. On the counter near where I store my school books is a mug with an entire box of new No. 2’s, all sharpened to wicked points and waiting- prettier than a bouquet of mums. I love school. I love being challenged and having my mind stretch and expand and swallow up new ideas and information to be drawn upon at some future, exciting date.

It’s going to be a big, swollen fat moon tonight. It’s a Harvest Moon. The Equinox rolls around, and balance is found for a fleeting moment in the year- only twice. Spring and Fall. After tonight, the season tips and darkness, at least here in the northern hemisphere, will dominate the light. We will continue the journey into the darkness, until the winter solstice, when the sun will be reborn and begin once again to beat back the darkness. It’s a timeless and universal dance.

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