Thursday, September 2, 2010

Nothing pale about this September!

My mom and I share a pretty cool trait in that we're both synesthetes--which probably ties in a lot with her mastery of quilting and sewing, my natural draw toward music and dance, and our shared love of beautiful and delicious food and gardening. And now fall is almost here, and the singing-dancing-dirt-worshipper inside me is clawing to get out!

When the nights start to get a breath of chill like this (mid-50s in Asheville), and the late-summer sunwarmed-soil aromas waft around on the breezes, I get the Fiona Apple song Pale September stuck in my head a lot (never minding that I drowned a couple months of high school heartbreak in that album!) The lyrics are, in part:

Pale September, I wore the time like a dress that year
The autumn days swung soft around me, like cotton on my skin
But as the embers of the summer lost their breath and disappeared
My heart went cold and only hollow rhythms resounded from within
But then he rose, brilliant as the moon in full
And sank in the burrows of my keep

And all my armour falling down, in a pile at my feet
And my winter giving way to warm, as I'm singing him to sleep
Autumn's time is like a dress every year, wrapping me up in the gold-orange-brown and the different textures...the crisp, drying air rich with woodsmoke, warm steamy houses with soup on the stove, hot toddies and snuggling with windows open to the refreshing nights. One of the synesthetic phenomena that happens with everyone is the association of those colors, smells and sensations with the turning of the season, but I like to think my relationship with Fall is special. With every stimulus, a thousand more are ignited inside me--I can truly see the scents, smell the textures and hear the changing sundowns. I step out the door and take a lungful, and she's just there for me; if I could bottle the scents of burning leaves, green walnuts, forest soil and cinnamon, that would be my heaven.

Well, romanticism aside, it is project season on Black Dog Hill. My work schedule will soon allow me to take better advantage of the optimal conditions for building some stuff, and boy, are we hitting the ground running! Right now the chicken house, kiwi trellis, porch resurfacing and garden expansion are happening simultaneously. Mom and I are planning a big ol' yard sale sometime in October, too, so that should be a hoot and a half.

Oh, and I'm learning to play the washboard. Got to sit in on my first jam last week with Wayne Erbsen, Chris Wells and Laura Pinell. Way fun!