|Aspen Leaf, Magdalena Mtns., NM, Sept. 2010|
Dancing the golden sunlight
across the tired floor."
- Matt Dimmic
From town, no yellow tinge in the aspens is yet visible in the Magdalena Mountains looming to our south, and as I ascended the tortuous road toward South Baldy yesterday I saw no hint of gold until I reached 10,000 feet. Even there only the occasional aspen is beginning to change, yet as a few golden leaves drifted down to the forest floor during our hike on the North Baldy trail I sensed summer slipping away. Autumn in New Mexico is especially exquisite, with almost cobalt skies, brilliant backlighting and deepening shadows as the sun descends toward its winter basin. As beautiful as it is, I always feel torn between awe and ache. D.H. Lawrence expressed the latter perfectly for me:
"The autumn always gets me badly, as it breaks into colours. I want to go south, where there is no autumn, where the cold doesn't crouch over one like a snow-leopard waiting to pounce." (D.H. Lawrence, Letters)
This year I needn't dread winter quite so much; thanks to new windows and a central heating system I won't need to wear several wool sweaters and a hat inside my own home, and Dad and I will soon be heading out to bring in wood for a fireplace that will finally be more for warmth of feeling than (inadequate) heating. I will also try to take a new perspective both generally and through my photography, perhaps not as enthusiastically as the following but at least trying to see things differently:
"I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape - the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn't show." (Andrew Wyeth)
It's worth a try, anyway... not like we have a choice, right?