Sunday, November 8, 2009

Struggling to Keep My Eyes Open

This lovely early November Sunday morning full of sun and the promise of a warm day ahead found the dogs and I out for a Pond Loop walk with camera and time and reflective curiosity nipping at the edge of semi-consciousness.

Our friend A, psychiatrist by trade, once explained some of the thinking around seasonal depression, light, the optic nerve, the reduction of light getting in to the brain through the optic nerve, resulting chemical changes. This morning it strikes me that at this moment of the year my whole ability to see suffers the same fate. See with a Capital S in the sense that Paul Rezendes uses it. See as in connect deeply by opening the senses to the forest around me. Maybe it has to do with the reduction in light getting through but it’s as if once things get browner and colder outside that my ability to see gets reduced as well.

These late fall days too often I'm just walking along these trails and I'm caught in my head, not present in the woods much at all. All seems plain and brown and dead or dying.

Until, of course, I open my eyes.

There is so much going on out here so it’s a real pity it’s tough to see. The browns are actually magnificent and there’s an undertone of muted green everywhere with occasional highlights of lively emerald green, strange purple, other shades. The light has a filtered quality that is partly the barer branches it is moving through, partly angle of the season.


Ei Keegan said...

...and (looking up again), in some places, you can see distant hills through the leafless trees, and imagine what the landscape looked like when Ozro, Submit, Phila, Capt. Eleazer, Frary,
Elisha, and Noah were living.

Green Key said...

I really love the quieter tones of fall. The russet of the oaks that are still holding their leaves, punctuated by the crazy splash of fading yellow - the last few leaves on a maple. When my energy is good I can even appreciate the sadness of the passing of summer and its abundance. When my energy is low . . . well . . . then my eyes close too.

Joe K. Shoenfeld said...

You are truly an optimist GreenKey and I admire you for it.