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A Personal Reflection: The Rhythm of Life

plant going to seed

Cicadas sing their early evening song and crickets add their chirp, reminding all who stop to listen that summer is almost over.

Farmers wrap up baling straw and hay; soon they will harvest corn and beans. As in every other year of my 58-year existence, I am reminded by the harvest that fall has arrived.

The baseball season winds down and soon football will vie for my attention. The Reds won’t make the playoffs. Will this be the year the Bengals win a playoff game?

The garden soon will be spent. The sunflowers are beginning to seed, offering a sumptuous meal to birds that frequent the yard. The Indian corn stalks have ears. Once dry, they will provide colorful decoration for Halloween.

Apples are starting to turn red. Last year, a freeze killed all the blooms, but this year there should be plenty of applesauce to can, a fact the grandchildren will certainly appreciate.

The last cabbages are shredded, and put into brine which will yield sauerkraut in a few weeks. A pungent odor wafts through the kitchen, one that is endured for the sake of hot dogs and spareribs.

The pumpkins are turning orange, and come Thanksgiving, the queen of the kitchen will turn their meat into pie. What possibly could be better than a pumpkin pie heaped with whipped cream and family gathered around the table, grateful for the lives they share with one another.

Summer flowers start to die and drop their seeds, while mums begin to flower, offering the year a last splash of color before the cold temperatures of winter claim their beauty.

Where has time gone, I ask myself. It seems the days pass so quickly now. Didn’t we just celebrate Christmas?

Life is short, I remind myself. Enjoy the rhythm of changing seasons and let them be a reminder that no one is promised tomorrow.



  1. Avatar
    Doug B

    Where does time go? The older we get the faster it seems to zip by. Loved reading this. I find myself now, working hard in the summer heat and humidity, longing for the crispness of fall.

  2. Avatar

    Ah, indeed! Living life in the moment, savoring these simple things. This is all that really is, anyhow. One moment at a time. Thank you!
    “And around and around and around turns the good earth. All things must change, as the seasons go by” From Circles by Todd Alan.

  3. Avatar

    In B.C. in the last decade or so that I have lived here, the growth this summer has been fast and furious, all the berries ripening en masse and the squash marching green over the garden with such speed that I hesitate to linger long there in case they grab my ankles with their tendrils! I await the glory of corn off the stalk and gobbled by the half-dozen, the avalanche of tomatoes we are getting this year, the bumper crop of garlic already picked and drying. What a marvel it is, this year with the growing conditions (and having irrigation to make sure the ground stays damp enough throughout.) I do love the change of seasons as well, the fullness of summer’s offering and then the sharp energy of October light, the charged air…. There are indeed moments that lift out of normal breath and take to the wind while we watch, that dance like young love. Sometimes, for a second, you can catch (or is it get-caught?) by some strange completeness, some everything that is enough, you know?
    Thanks for this, Bruce.

  4. Avatar
    August Rode

    “I’ll bide my time, like there’s any other way
    It moves too slow, moves too fast
    It’s gone and past
    And stopped entirely today”
    — Cheryl Wheeler, “But the Days and Nights Are Long”

  5. Avatar

    I think I know why you feel this way, the days are now noticeably shorter. To me the appearance of the Pleiades in the evening reminds me fall is coming.
    At any rate your lament reminds me of a poem I happened upon years ago.

    Busy, curious, thirsty fly!
    Drink with me and drink as I:
    Freely welcome to my cup,
    Couldst thou sip and sip it up:
    Make the most of life you may,
    Life is short and wears away.

    Both alike are mine and thine
    Hastening quick to their decline:
    Thine’s a summer, mine’s no more,
    Though repeated to threescore.
    Threescore summers, when they’re gone,
    Will appear as short as one!

    “On a Fly Drinking Out of His Cup” by William Oldys, Public Domain.

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Bruce Gerencser