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EDITORIAL/First Day of Autumn: Fall brings endings, new beginnings

September 21, 2022 at 10:00 p.m.

With temperatures still in the 90s, it might not feel like autumn is anywhere close.

But it's here. Today marks the first full day of fall as well as the Autumnal Equinox, when day and night share the sky equally, give or take a few seconds.

Fall is often considered a mystical, sometimes melancholy season. It's a time of transition from summer into winter. The nights come earlier, the temperature gradually cools and the leaves change colors before falling and covering the ground. Poets and songwriters frequently use autumn as a metaphor for aging, Maxwell Anderson's lyrics for the classic "September Song" capture that feeling perfectly:

"Oh it's a long, long while

from May 'till December

And the days grow short

When you reach September.

When the Autumn weather

turns the leaves to flame

One hasn't got time

For the waiting game."

But it is also the season of harvest, when farmers reap the bounty of their labor and fresh fruits and vegetables make their way to local markets. Many Native American tribes also also associated the season with a harvest of sorts, as wild plants gave up their fruit for gathering.

Fair season, which descends from traditional harvest celebrations, is a big part of autumn as well.

In days past, our own Four States Fair would have been underway. But now the event is held in the spring. Still, other fairs and festivals, from the State Fair of Texas to small regional celebrations, are set for the coming weeks.

Halloween is just around the corner, with Thanksgiving close behind. And soon after we will celebrate Christmas and the new year.

Fall means football and a new lineup of TV shows. It means politics in earnest and the November elections. It means hunting season. It means change and renewal.

It means the cycle of life continues. For without fall, there would be no winter. And without winter, no spring or summer.

Fall is a mystery certainly, melancholy at times, but a miracle always.

Print Headline: EDITORIAL/First Day of Autumn: Fall brings endings, new beginnings

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