What a Difference a Day Makes – The Magnolia in Autumn – Weather Systems

Wednesday morning, 7am, the magnolia tree’s leaves are glowing a warm yellow with accents of green. Unfortunately, the air is warm too, and the leaves lose a little of their magic, unaccompanied as they are by the cool pinch of an autumn wind. I put my trusty brown cardigan in my car nonetheless, willing a cold front. Junior is raking leaves across the street and agrees to rake mine next.

Seven am today and we’re still stuck in the doldrums of 70-80 degree weather in October. Work is muggy and stifling; the brown cardigan comes off as I teach, no matter how nice it looks with that nice paisley tie. But then a change. Leaving work the leaves are being tornadoed in the courtyard, then rush towards me like a tributary, like wild maenads in an autumnal dance. It is times like these that I wish I were as adept with a video camera as with my first generation Canon 5D. I want to capture motion as well as color and light and compositions. I contemplate my attempts in the past and blanch at the thought of shooting and editing it would take to get what I want. The temperature is 20 degrees cooler, and when I come home it becomes evident that the wind has visited here, too. The magnolia has experienced a sea change with the amount of leaves it has lost in a day. The buds which will bear through the winter and blossom in spring are now clearly visible. I nestle in my cardigan and smile.


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