It's near sunset on October 14 (6:48 pm to start this sequence) and I am out in the yard, gusty winds blowing my robe about, tree limbs swaying and branches falling. The sky is taking on a rosy glow, Pinks, apricots and shades of salmon tinge the clouds. Grays and browns predominate.
This view (above) is facing southwest. It is still pleasantly warm (nearly 70°) but rain has been promised all day and bands of showers approach the Miami Valley from Indiana, swirling down towards us like a giant pinwheel on radar.
Looking more due west, it would seem that a front has already passed, that clearing is underway. The two ash trees (just right of center) have been stripped bare these past two days by the incessant wind.
Looking northeast now, a small cumulus moves eastward near the horizon. The maple near our kitchen window is just past prime, it's brilliant gold beginning to fade. Many of its leaves already littler the ground.
The maple beside the barn has a similar yellow shade. In the distance, the sky glows a brilliant orange as the sun sinks to the horizon and begins to set in earnest.
Only the gathering clouds prevent me from watching the sun dip from view. I am seeing the molten metal in the crucible; the flame is beyond my view.
But just as the sun begins to drop behind the distant fields, there is a stroke of luck. A cloud or two moves out of the way and a shaft of sunlight reaches.me. It lights a billowy cloud from below, soft as satin, all pastels and muted tones.
One final gasp of sunlight and the day is ended. Overnight that rain, still distant at this hour, will patter against the windows and drop 0.22". This morning I walked just the same. The 51° air was cool and the breeze still held the chill of night. But I did not wear a jacket, preferring to feel the full force of fall as close to my skin as possible.
A few more weeks and this will be no more than a fond memory. Snow flakes will fill the air soon.