To this rural girl it brings images of corn fields turning yellow and dry, waiting for the picker. Squash and pumpkins lay at opposite ends of a large garden. Potatoes wait to be dug under dry and shriveled plants. Onions are pulled from the ground and their long hollow leaves braided together.
If the weather had been right, and dad talked to the owners, we gathered nuts. We’d carry, or drag, burlap sacks and collect dark butternuts from the ground. (Yes, I’m aware butternuts to not grow everywhere. Other places it would be walnuts or hickory nuts that were valued.)
We weren’t the only creatures that collected a harvest. Generations of forest creatures collect and store nuts and fruits for weeks of cold winter. They come in different shapes and sizes but one of the most prevalent (and cutest) is the squirrel. Some fall days the oak tree on my lawn is as busy as a hotel at high season.
Nature spreads this fall buffet on my walking route – where the mature trees drop their fruits to share.