The Last Rose of Summer


Needlework by
Barbara Mattio

There is a bittersweet energy about October. I gaze out at my garden and a smile comes to my face. The roses continue to bloom despite cooler evenings. We are almost at the time to say goodbye to their gentle fragrances and delicate petals. A farewell to their beauty. Cool temperatures day and night will eventually take each last bloom and end its beauty. We are not bereft though as Autumn brings a brilliance of color as a consolation prize. So far, we have begun to see the green turning to vibrant colors of red, gold, orange and yellow.

It is the last gift of the cycle of life. The last brilliant colors before Mother Earth goes to her hibernation and the world turns white, gray and brown. It is a blessing to know that as the cycle spins it never stops and we will have a fresh, vibrant and exciting Spring. I love the anticipation of the renewal of the earth, with the springing up of the early spring bulbs soon to be a riot of color and a sudden rush of sweet fragrance.

For now, there is the bittersweet of the last of the flowers and the last of my beloved roses until the spring. Since this is the cycle of life, the promise that after a rest the world will renew itself and we will once again frolic among the flowers and trees.

So we say goodbye to the bees working hard at gathering the pollen and the ladybugs and the iridescence of the dragonflies. A last wave of the wings of a butterfly and the song of the cicadas at night. They will return in the spring and the cycle will begin again.

A Jewish Prayer

And G-d saw everything that was mad, and found it very good.

And The One said: This is a beautiful world that I have given you.

Take good care of it, do not ruin it.

It is said; Before the world was created, the Holy One kept

Creating worlds and destroying them.  Finally this one was created and was satisfied.

Adonai said to Adam; This is the last world I shall make. I place it in your hands; hold it in trust.

Autumn in Western North Carolina Photo by Barbara Mattio

Autumn in a Garden


“An evolution of color fills
The spaces made green
Under original creation.
Red sun veiled silver.

In a moment, we will
be closer, in a moment the question is answered
by a death. It floats down, brushing my hand swirling
a slight fog.

You lost your father
in a dream just yesterday,
Saw him crawl with his face
In the dirt and the night
suck him up and away.”

———- Ken Sonnenberg

Harvest Moon