The time change has made me late for my morning appointment with the sun. It waits for me in the garden instead of me waiting for it. I approach a patch of sunlit ground to stand in, and I allow the sunlight to chase away the chill as I watch the dogs run around sniffing out the smells of last night’s visitors

Autumn has finally arrived after a brutal fight with summer, and with it, my garden dies. Flower heads have dried up and droop with the burden of their seeds. The trees are nearly bare, their colorful leaves blanketing the soil like a calico quilt. As I stand in the bleak landscape, hands cupped around a steaming mug of coffee; I contemplate death. I reach out to a nearby Cosmos flower, dried and brittle, it crumbles in my hand. The slight breeze carries away the debris, and I am left holding seeds, a gift from my precious flower, something to hold on to after its death.

I realize everything dies and becomes the very thing needed for new growth.  It is during the winter months the leaves and dead plants break down into humus, becoming the filter for the spring rains to percolate a steady source of nutrients for new growth and the cycle starts again, nothing wasted This realization brings me comfort, for if everything is to die; it still has a purpose after its death.

I have faced many deaths; death of a marriage, of friendships, and of jobs. I have faced deaths of illusions, a philosophy, and a religion. I have endured the death of loved ones, and I face my own mortality every morning I look in the mirror. Death is a part of life. I gained seeds of wisdom from each ending I experienced, and each shaped me into who I am today. Like the garden, the cycle continues until I die. My goal until then is to glean as much as I can from my experiences and share what I gain with those around me. So when I die, like the flower, I will be known for the beauty I gave to the world and leave seeds for those who carry on after I am gone.

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