In the orchestra pit of autumnal skies, the crows and jays (with an occasional tenor interruption from the Canada geese) seem to have taken over. Stilled, for the moment, are the sweeping, interwoven melodies of I don't know how many spring and summer species.
But the well-oiled door on winter's tomb has not yet clicked shut. No snow has fallen. The hardy mums still blossom. And my neighbor's Japanese maple, always the last on the block to go bald, has not yet given up the ghost.
Still, the furnace kicks in now and then, yesterday my son fired up the wood stove and last night I turned on the electric radiator in the zendo.
Preparations are in the works, but when have preparations ever assured the high notes or low?
It's coming, but the question is, what is it and how could it vary -- or not -- from the summer symphonies?