Ah, Autumn! Gravestone Rubbings!

Oh, Autumn! My very favorite season. I love the crisp air, the crunch of brown leaves underfoot, the need to keep a light shawl handy as one is running errands, the wee creatures scurrying about, collecting their acorns for the long winter (and if the number of them falling from my oak tree is any indicator, it’s going to be a cold, snowy one!) and I love the fuss and fun of Halloween!

I love the howling winds, particularly in late October, when they remind us of the holy souls we’ll remember in November. I love the shortened days and longer nights; all that darkness promises the advent of Advent, and the Light that is not overcome!

Today I drove around–because I like driving in the rain–until I found a good graveyard, because autumn and cemeteries seem to go together. I like to pack a lunch, stroll an old graveyard, rest on a cobwebby bench and take rubbings of what looks interesting.

Some nuts and crusts of bread were in my pack for the chipmunks and the squirrels, and the red-winged black birds and chattering sparrows. I may be a Benedictine, now, but I was a Franciscan, first.

I used to take my kids to graveyards when they were very small and wanted to explore and feel a little free of Mommy. Safest place in the world if there are no open graves, and there were always great leaves to collect, too!

It’s an October thing.

Meanwhile, Mary DeTurris Poust celebrates autumn by taking some lovely pictures of acorns and late-blooming flowers. Apparently her oak trees are dropping a lot of acorns, too!

Prepare for a coooold winter, brrrrrr.

I don’t like winter half so much as autumn, and October always goes too fast!

About Elizabeth Scalia
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  • Teresa

    Where I grew up in Pennsylvania there was a wonderful Italian grave yard where we used to ride our bikes and just spend the afternoon in the quiet grave yard. It had old mausoleums and large oak trees. The grave yard where my late husband was recently buried is in the Shenandoah Valley about four miles from the entrance to the National Park. It is surrounded by farms and the Blue Ridge mountains. This fall it will be quite spectacular. I know he would be very pleased with those surroundings. Perhaps some might think it odd that I should take comfort in that thought, but I do.

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  • kmk

    Awesome idea. BTW, sweet photo of boys–youngest has your smile!

  • http://victor-undergo.blogspot.com/ Victor

    Other than Christmas, I guess now that you mentioned “IT” this time of the year is great but you scared me a little when in so many words as a child you use to picnic at graveyards but then I remembered that sinner vic was “IT” most of the time while I was growing UP but now “IT” is a different story. I love the changing of the guards, I mean the leaves changing colors and like you said in so many words, the crisp smell of little Jack Frost. I love “IT” when “IT” rains and wondering why that particular angel of god is crying.

    Graveyards no longer scare me because I believe that most of them love me and every time I pass a grave stone, I usually do the sign of the cross while driving saying, Father, Son and Holy Spirit and on occasion sinner vic will join me and say, Mother, Father, Son and Holy Spirit but you must forgive him cause he’s a little crazy and he says that “IT” started when Jesus was born and sometime, he even has a little tear in his eyes when he says “IT”. Go Figure what a crazy person might do nowadays.

    I better stop now before I literally get carried away! :)

    God Bless,


  • dry valleys

    Funny you should say that but I really hate it. The rain, the cold (but not cold enough for some proper frost/snow, which at least is able to make up its mind what it wants to be), & worst of all the nights slowly drawing in. I do like the food though, as a locavore & eater of seasonal food (for the most part, apart from a few things I wouldn’t be without) it’s really a good time.

    I will be at a farmers’ market tomorrow, the first thing you see when you get there is a giant pile of vegetables. As if they had so many it was just getting silly :)

    People actually go to the lengths of foraging for food, & why not when it cuts your food bill & brings the satisfaction of having done something yourself? I’d say most things are best left to professional farmers but a bit can’t hurt.

  • BB.

    Fall in your part of the country sounds lovely. Unfortunately where I live ( the Texas Gulf Coast), we have two seasons: Summer and February.

  • http://www.savkobabe.blogspot.com Gayle Miller

    Graveyards are great places to study too – if you live in L.A. or someplace with a similar climate. I did all the studying for my MBA at Forest Lawn Glendale thank you very much! Very peaceful and pleasant place. Thermos of coffee, quiet locale, lots of work accomplished. This was, of course, before cell phones!

  • http://www.capturinghappiness.com/harvest/ Mary

    I think it is awesome how you find joy in this season, many people hate fall because of the upcoming winter, but for me this is a time of reflection for me… and of hope. At harvest, we gather in all the fruits of our hard labor, and we reap the rewards of what we’ve planted. I’m hopeful that the seeds I planted in the Spring and Summer will come to fruition in this season.

  • SKAY

    Autumn is my favorite season also. The pecture is wonderful.

  • Mutnodjmet

    Happy October, Anchoress. I loved doing grave rubbings when I was a kid — and the spot you were at looked so beautiful that I wish I could be there to join you. Have a wonderful Halloween season, and I look forward to more of your autumn reflection posts!

    Hugs and prayers! :)

  • MB

    Just curious, is that Holy Rood?

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