A Montana Season

The hot days of summer are slowing,

I open the door and Autumn dances in ,

In all of her brazen glory and childish splendor,

She breezes by with a cool morning kiss and a rustling of leaves.

leaf-62710_640     “It’s about time!” Summer grumbled as Autumn swished past him with a cool kiss on his cheek and a swish of colorful leafy skirts.
“Summer you are such a grumbly old man!” Autumn laughed. “What a way to greet someone who is going to give you a much needed rest.”

And a much-needed rest Summer needed indeed. After the sabbatical he took last season (which actually is what he took every season through Autumn, Winter and Spring) Summer felt refreshed and ready to start this season anew. But true to Nature, all good things must come to an end. And Summer’s good thing ended the minute he walked in Spring’s door.

That is when Summer’s horrible season began. Oh, he thought it was going to be just fine when he took over for Spring.  Spring had everything good to say about his season. The rains had been bountiful and had given all the trees and growing things a good start. But Spring failed to tell Summer that he went a little overboard and the flooding began. Now if anyone knows the human race, you can guess how angry they were when Spring mistakenly added more rain to the already swollen creeks and rivers and caused a myriad of wet mishaps that the humans were still trying to correct, even now.

When Summer took over for Spring on June 21, Spring assured him that all was good and well. Everything was well taken care of or so Summer thought. He shouldn’t have even begun to think that what Spring told him was even half the truth.  The farmers were angry that they could not get into their soggy fields and  most got a late start on planting. No one was even prepared for the hot days to come. And the bugs…oh the bugs that followed the wet season were atrocious. Summer knew he should have read the Book of Nature a little closer, but as always Summer was a little bit lazy and barely glanced at the book and Spring’s notations. He closed  it after seeing an abundance of “OOPS” written all over the first few pages of the Book of Nature.

So Summer’s season started out in a bit of hot water…so to speak. And like a snowball rolling downhill, (to use old man Winter’s quote) troubles just seemed to grow. Summer tried to make things right by adding a little extra sunshine but with the humidity already in the air; well that just brought the huge severe thunderstorms,the hail, and the most dreaded of all….tornadoes. Tornadoes were the bane of Summer’s existence. They had been around since before grandfather’s season. No one really knew where they came from and even now, nobody could actually predict when or where they would pop up. They had a mind of their own and like a bull in a china shop, they caused destruction wherever they landed. But the humans were getting closer to figuring it out. Summer just wished they would do it soon. Tornadoes were not good for Summer’s reputation.

“Summer…” Autumn was waving a golden sunflower in front of Summer’s face.  “Yoo-hoo Summer, are you listening to me?” She breezed.
Summer came out of his melancholy musings and focused on what Autumn was saying to him.
“Summer, you do daydream aplenty!” Autumn tittered. “Do you have anything to sip? The trip here was very hot and dry, and I am just parched!” Autumn gushed.
“I have some leftover lemonade.” Summer offered.
“Actually, I was hoping for a nice cup of spiced apple tea.” Autumn hummed.
Summer sighed. “Autumn, you know I don’t keep spiced apple tea in my cupboards. You ask me this every season. And I tell you every season, I don’t have any. You should try to bring some with you next time.”
Autumn chortled. “Oh Summer, there’s always hope for you. I know that one day you will be prepared for my arrival. I do have some packed in my suitcase.” She danced off, leaving a chill in the air.

Summer shivered. Ooh …Fall was in the air. Or rather Autumn was. Autumn was very meticulous about what her given name was. She did not think Fall was eloquent enough for her. It reminded her too much of stairs and skinned knees. She much rather liked to be called Autumn. It sounded colorful and cool. There was no arguing with Autumn about this. Summer learned long ago, that Autumn looked sweet and calm on the outside, but make her angry by calling her Fall and she could give you one of the frostiest looks that would freeze even old man Winter on his coldest days.

Summer sighed. He had better get his suitcase packed. He still needed to put his finishing notes in the Book of Nature. Today was September 23, the first day of Autumn’s season. Autumn would be moving in with all of her cool weather belongings. Autumn was prepared for anything…you could tell by the many numerous suitcases and boxes that she had packed for her season.
Summer once asked Autumn if she really needed all that stuff.

With a frosty look Autumn replied, “Summer… one must be prepared for anything. Oh my goodness, don’t you remember the year that you mistakenly left some of your summer heat behind and it got up to ninety plus degrees here for the whole month of October. I had to actually dig out some of my  short sleeved green leafy outfits to stay cool.” She continued, “And remember the year old man Winter forgot what day it was and mistakenly showed up with snow in September. That was one of the coldest seasons I have ever endured! I am lucky that I brought my wool coat and snowshoes that year. Well, that is why I have to be prepared. Humph!”
Autumn had sighed and flounced away in her leafy skirts. Summer made a mental note to himself, that he would not ask Autumn that question again.

Summer  finished packing his one suitcase. The Book of Nature was  finally completed for this season. He remembered to write about the flooding waters from Spring. And then there were the many insects including the grasshoppers, though not invited this season,  that had come back three fold this year. Summer had been cursed with these buggers for four years now. And he saw no end in sight to get rid of these unwanted pests. Heck, the pesky little buggers would probably don mittens and scarves and try to eat their way through Autumn and old man Winter’s seasons. They were in the same category as the misquitos, flies and gnats. They were a pain in the royal neck.

Summer also noted the hot days and severe storm days. However one good note was that even through all this, the flowers had bloomed beautifully and the crops had turned out wonderfully. Of course, there was that incident with the oil spill and a few ruined crops. But that wasn’t his fault. He blamed that on Spring and human error. Spring would have to take the brunt of that blame. Besides,he knew personally that the farmers had been well compensated for that mess. And of course he forgot about the wild fires that were still raging caused by a bit of miscommunication. Try as he might he couldn’t get  Mother Nature to send enough rain down to put them all out, and he didn’t know if his messages were clear enough but sometimes instead of sending rain, Nature just sent thunder and lightning and that made  it worse because lightning had no conscience whatsoever. The electric terror loved to start wild fires. And along with Thunder, his partner in crime, they caused more damage than good. And so on and so on.

No worries he thought as he closed the book,  Autumn would fix it all. She was good at that. She would cool down the hot  angry earth with her cooling rains and dropping temperatures. And if that didn’t work than she would get a bit frosty. And if all else failed and she got desperate enough, Autumn would humbly call on Old man Winter to send some of his white stuff a  litte bit early. Summer knew that would be Autumn’s  last ditch effort because Autumn did not like to ask for help.

Summer knew Autumn would never forgive him for starting all the wild fires. But what could he do. You can’t argue with Mother Nature for recieving the wrong message.  Of course, Summer didn’t blame himself for sending the wrong messages.  One good thing was that Autmn had a whole year to cool down before she saw Summer again. and by then all would be fine and dandy and Autumn would be a cool breath of fresh air again.

Summer looked around to see if he forgot anything else. Already the place was taking on Autumn’s personality. The leaves were beginning to turn colors of gold, red and orange. The first frost had settled in some places which had caused the garden plants and flowers to wilt. The pumpkins were turning orange on the vine and  Mr.  Harvest Moon was a round orange circle in the cool night sky.

Summer could not understand, however, how Autumn could handle this time of year with all the trees shedding their beautiful green leaves and the beautiful flowers wilting and turning brown. But Autumn just sighed and said, “The earth is just settling down for the long winter sleep, Summer. And I am here to sing it a lovely lullaby. Summer you should know what a good rest does for the soul.”

That, Summer did indeed know because he was looking forward to this one.    So with a warm goodbye Summer bid Autumn a final farewell for the season.

Summer was long gone when Autumn finally finished unpacking. It was time to sit down, put up her feet and take a sip of that nice warm cup of spiced apple tea. And time to get acquainted with the Book of Nature for another season. As she opened the book, Autumn squealed in surprise.

“Summerrrrrrrrrrr….” She yelled.

But it was too late.  Summer was all the way down Nature Lane when Autumn made her discovery. If he did hear Autumn he pretended not to. Summer disappeared around the bend skipping and whistling like a small child on a warm summer day.100_3767

Rain

A calm soothing rain softly drifts down

In the early morning hours

When the birds are still sleepily testing their morning songs

And the early light of dawn bathes the land

As it it awakens from it’s nightly slumber.

The smell of wet earth permeates the smokey haze filled air

caused by the wild fires of summer.

Rumbles in the far off distance warn of  the passing storm.

The dry cracked earth welcomes the rain

Sighing , crying out for more.

Flowers raise their stately heads and green foilage

Skyward

Reaching for the water blessing.

A chill breeze blows through the window by my desk

Causing a shiver

Letting me know that although we are

In the middle of these hot August sweltering

Dog days of summer that

These too will soon pass.

And the chill frosty days of Fall

Will soon be upon us

When the pumpkins turn orange on the vine

And the leaves fall from the trees

In a kaleidescope of colors.

When our breaths come out in small

puffs and the frost covered grass crunches

under our feet.

I can smell Fall in the air

In this season of summer.

Soon Summer’s hot days

Will fade away for another year

And Fall will dance in on

A cool Autumn  breeze.

The cycle of nature will go on

In a neverending circle

of time.100_6149

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Storm – Endless Dance of Nature

100_4043A storm is coming.

The dark sky grumbles it’s displeasure

In the hot summer day’s heat.

Mammoth, dark, looming clouds swirl together

In angry bubbling clusters

As the storm forms overhead.

A crescendo of ferocity echoes off the horizon.

An ominous foreboding of stormy vengeance.

BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!

A gray mugginess creeps slowly

Over the sun kissed earth

As the dark clouds cover the golden sphere.

The earth shudders

In the gray chill.

The trees have stilled their dance in the breeze.

The birds have silenced their songs of melody.

The earth waits in muted silence

As the sky decides it’s destiny.

Suddenly! One large drop of water

Falls…….

To the ground.

Soon  more drops follow

In a torrential, pounding downpour,

Soon becoming frozen nuggets

Of icy Destruction.

BANG! BANG! BANG!

The storm plays it’s own symphony

In a cacophany of ice and water

as trees bend to the relentless pressure of the tumultuous wind

And the earth is pelted with crystal orbs of icy assailment .

Nature is at war with Nature

In this tempermental dance of unpredictability.

The sky bellows out large claps of thunder

and lights up the dark horizon with searing bolts of light,

Flashing, crackling, zapping

In a frenzied display of electric mania.

But the earth stands it’s ground against the storm driven assault

Unwilling to surrender.

And just as suddenly as it came

the storm wanders away like a mischievious child

Leaving the remnants of it’s tirade scattered about

like forgotten

toys.

Lo and Behold…..

The dark clouds roll away

to reveal a blue, blue sky.

Warm caressing rays touch the wet weather shaken land.

The rain kissed leaves of the trees drip remnants of the storm

As they sway in the cool breeze.

The birds once again tweet their happy

songs of life.

The storm has passed, the war has been waged.

 

Once again the earth will renew itself

And go on.

In this endless dance of nature.100_6157

Grand Parents- Sometimes The Forgotten

As I get older I have more time to contemplate things. And this week I have been thinking about grandparents. No I am not a grandparent myself but I have many friends and family that are  and I did have grand parents and I do have to say someday I am looking forward to being one.

I have talked to various grandparents and have found they all have one thing in common. They love their grandchildren. You know a grandparent would do anything for their grandchildren. They would move heaven and earth for their grand children if they could. They get their faces painted, make silly sounds and faces just to see a grandchild laugh.  The make sure they have lots of toys at their house when the grand children come to visit and they always have goodies just for the grand children. Tears come to their eyes when a grandchild says I love you Gramma or I love you Grampa. Grandparents are a special breed because they are parents too.  They are the last resort as a baby sitter when you can’t find one. They are the shoulder you cry on when your worn out and tired from an all nighter with a crying daughter or son. Sometimes they even help you pull the all nighter. They are the advisors when you don’t know why your child isn’t pooping. LOL. And they are just there when you need to talk to someone who has seen it all. They can advise you on how to warm a bottle for your baby, what to do when your fifteen year old stays out too late, or your eight year old decides to finally say the F – word.  A grandparent is a parent that has been through the complete  cycle. The child cycle.

And sometimes a grandparent will be the most honest person on earth and tell you how it really is. Because that is the world as they see it.  Trust me all you grandchildren. Grand parents do know what they are talking about. They have alot more years of experience on you and they in all honesty have been where you have been long before you were even a sparkle of a grandchild in their eye.

What really is heavy on my heart is how some grandparents are sometimes treated. And no this does not pertain to any one in particular. But if this part does make you feel guilty than maybe its time to take a good look at how you treat your grand parents or as children your parents who are grand parents.

Sometimes grand parents become parents again. When their children can’t handle being a parent or when for some reason they aren’t able to be the parent, the grand parent will step in and lovingly take on the responsiblilty of being a parent. This is where the apple cart gets a little upset so to speak. Because that is when the grand parent/parent relationship gets a little fuzzy. Now I am not saying that any grand parent is complaining. It’s just the way I see it in various situations.  It’s very easy just  to take a grand parent for granted then. Easy to think they will baby sit when you decide you need time to yourself and you are just completely tired of your kids. And trust me they will take your children in a minute. That is the unconditional love of a grand parent. They may be tired on their feet from working all day or just plain tired from growing old but when they look at that child of yours who is a grand child of theirs, all they see is a wonderful creation of God that they have the awesome chance of getting to know for awhile. Because and this part brings tears to my eyes, Grandparents eventually go away to a place where someday we will see them again. Grand parents don’t always get the chance to see their hopes and dreams fulfilled in the life of a grand child. It’s sad but true.

What I am trying to say is this. Sometimes our lives get so busy with living our life that we forget about others, especially the ones that gave us life. In one way or another. Some times we forget that our grand parents won’t always be around to tell  stories of when they were young or give you well earned advice on how to live.  Spend as much time as you can with your grand parents/parents. Sometimes one just takes for granted they will always be there but we all know but do not want to admit that they won’t be.

I know myself that some of the best memories I have are when I got to spend time with my grand parents. Those are memories I will cherish forever. Whether you barely see your grandparents or if you spend alot of time with your grand parents, let them know how much you love them and appreciate them. You don’t have to do anything very special. Grand parents don’t ask for much. A good visit, a hug and and an I love you would pretty much make their day. Listen to their stories, take walks with them, look at their flowers and just spend time with them. Make some precious memories because someday that will be all you have. grandparent-2656412_1920