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« Ig Nobel Awards Celebrates 30 Years of the Lighter Side of Science involving Earthworms | Main | Invasion of more than 200 billion Daddy Long Legs on Lawns »

To Autumn by John Keats as we celebrate the Autumn Equinox

Autumn LeavesWhen leaves begin to fall, temperatures drop and days become shorter, it can only mean autumn is on its way. No matter how hot the summer has been, the next season of the year is fast approaching, with home comforts, bronzed woodland hues and a pumpkin or two. 

For many, autumn is enjoyable because of its festivals and the sense that "life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall", if you're of the same opinion as F. Scott Fitzgerald. 

According to the astronomical calendar, the seasonal transition occurs on September 22 (today), the date of the Autumn equinox. However under the meteorological definition, which is based on the Gregorian calendar, autumn began on September 1.

Here is everything you need to know about the changing seasons, from how the equinox works to what you can look forward to over the next few months.

Read more about the Autumn Equinox

To Autumn by John Keats

 

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-eves 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,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
      For summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.
 
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
   Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
   Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep,
   Drows'd with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
      Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
   Steady thy laden head across a brook;
   Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
      Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.
 
Where are the songs of spring? Ay, Where are they?
   Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
   And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
   Among the river sallows, borne aloft
      Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
   Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
   The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
      And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

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