Autumn in the Garden

by Henry Van Dyke
currier & ives

When the frosty kiss of Autumn in the dark
Makes its mark
On the flowers, and the misty morning grieves
Over fallen leaves;
Then my olden garden, where the golden soil
Through the toil
Of a hundred years is mellow, rich, and deep,
Whispers in its sleep.

‘Mid the crumpled beds of marigold and phlox,
Where the box
Borders with its glossy green the ancient walks,
There’s a voice that talks
Of the human hopes that bloomed and withered here
Year by year,
Dreams of joy, that brightened all the labouring hours,
Fading as the flowers.

Yet the whispered story does not deepen grief;
But relief
For the loneliness of sorrow seems to flow
From the Long-Ago,
When I think of other lives that learned, like mine,
To resign,
And remember that the sadness of the fall
Comes alike to all.

What regrets, what longings for the lost were theirs!
And what prayers
For the silent strength that nerves us to endure
Things we cannot cure!
Pacing up and down the garden where they paced,
I have traced
All their well-worn paths of patience, till I find
Comfort in my mind.

Faint and far away their ancient griefs appear:
Yet how near
Is the tender voice, the careworn, kindly face,
Of the human race!
Let us walk together in the garden, dearest heart,
Not apart!
They who know the sorrows other lives have known
Never walk alone.

Artwork: American Homestead, Autumn by Currier & Ives(1869) 


A Letter to Harper Lee

“Atticus was right. One time he said you never really know a man

until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them.

Just standing on the Radley porch was enough.”

Dear Ms. Harper Lee, harper lee

On Sunday afternoon, I finished reading your novel, To Kill a Mockingbird. 

For several weeks, it felt as though I walked the streets of Maycomb, Alabama. Gently, you led me by the hand through town, until I came to know the rows of houses and the people who lived there.

While Scout Finch narrated, I became acquainted with the mysterious rumors of Boo Radley. I observed old Mrs. Dubose when she hollered insults from her front porch. And I sat by her bedside, listening to Jem reading aloud.

When Dill Harris came to stay during the summer months, I engaged in mischief and mishaps. I gain advice from Miss Maudie, while she tended her garden. And I snuck inside the courthouse to hear Atticus defend Tom Robinson.

I found myself completely immersed in their world. Through the eyes of childhood innocence, you taught me the meaning of equality. The truest definition of courage. And to wait until it’s time to worry. Most importantly, I witnessed the perfect display of integrity and empathy in the character of Atticus Finch.

It has always been my belief that the very best stories are the ones that plant themselves and take root somewhere deep inside the heart of the reader. I will always remember why it is a sin to kill a mockingbird.

Yours admirably,

Tamara Black

 Harper Lee grew up in Monroeville, Alabama. Her father was an attorney. She lived down the street from Truman Capote, who became her lifelong friend, and was the inspiration for the character of Dill Harris.           To Kill a Mockingbird is her only published work.

The photograph was taken on set during the 1962 film adaption.
Further Reading: Lessons in Manliness from Atticus Finch

To Autumn

by John Keats


Autumnal Village Street by Walter Moras (1856-1925)

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,

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Gold in Our Pockets

The charcoal grey sky provides the perfect backdrop for the vibrant colours on display. If you step outside, you might catch the faint smell of wood-smoke hanging in the air.

We hold on to our jackets tightly, with our hands planted deep inside our pockets. The atmosphere is filled with nostalgia, and evening comes more swiftly than expected.

Processed with VSCOcam with 9 preset“Even if something is left undone,
everyone must take time to sit still
and watch the leaves turn.”
Elizabeth Lawrence

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