This is the landscape telling the story of itself.
All around us is the rich wild vocabulary of the natural world, we are deeply intertwined within this conversation if we knew it.
Becoming participative however requires no magic, no shamanic skills, no otherworldly abilities. The language of the wild is simple and is woven deeply within our DNA.
It is a multidimensional language of sound, smell, sight, touch, taste, and feeling. It is all around us and inside of us.
The fiery colours are already touching the edge of the wild vines. Underfoot there is a deeper layer of oak leaves than I have felt before, they are already brown and crisp and at the back of the senses, that musty, earthy autumnal smell is evident.
This is the story of the failure of last winter’s rain. It is the plants shutting down early so they may conserve what moisture is left within their cells and in the ground around them.
The trees and plants know that shedding their leaves will delay their desiccation and so the wild intelligence of the ecology communicates to all in this place – this is the time for leaf drop.
For us, this is conveyed to our senses with the deep russets of the leaves, the extra softness of the layer of shed leaves and the odour and taste of an early fall.
Photo: Leaves along the ancient holloway. Courtesy of the author.