I returned home last week from a trip to Kentucky and Mississippi for the American Forest FoundationIt was hot when I left the mountains the week before, and stayed hot in Kentucky, and hotter still in Mississippi. It was muggy in a way that seems unique to Mississippi. Mosquitoes were still fierce and cotton remained high in the fields – a lush, brown and deep green blanket dotted with white throughout. Rolls of baled cotton gathered at pick-up points on the edges of fields, ready for their trip to the gin.
I drove home through a major storm front; rain across the entire 435 miles of Tennessee on Interstate 40 with hard downpours in the three major cities that only began to clear as I came into Madison County. At home, I went for a walk in the transitioning landscape. Cooler and dryer air. Longer shadows. Leaves showing signs of color change and beginning to edge the road and fill the ditchline. The last of the medicinals – Joe Pye weed and Jewel weed - insistent in their attention-getting array. I love the clarity of signs such as these. Reminding me, in this case, of the impermanence and ever-changing quality of life, both mine and nature’s.