Sunflower Seeds logo

Sunflower Seeds

 

Celebrating Everyday Spirituality

Sunflower Seeds

Celebrating Everyday Spirituality

A Reflection for Autumn


I can’t let autumn fly by, without a few thoughts on this beautiful time of the year. So, today I’ve put together some brief reflections on this season by four writers—all happen to be women.


The first is a quote by George Eliot—whose real name was Mary Ann Evans. She used her masculine pen name for her famous books including Middlemarch, Silas Marner, and Mill on the Floss. Here’s what she wrote about Autumn:



Delicious Autumn!

My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird

I would fly about the earth seeking successive autumns!


* * * * * * *




The next three reflections are from the book The Circle of Life: The Heart’s Journey Through the Seasons by Joyce Rupp and Macrina Wiederkehr:


From “Antiphons for Autumn”:

O seeds sprung loose from dying plants,

Come! Come teach us to be generative.

Carry us to places where we can take root.

Encourage the seed of our love to fall freely.

Gift us with the grace of surrender.

O Come!


***************************************

(Photo by Anna Tukhfatullina – Pexels)



Macrina Wiederkehr:

“Autumn leads the seasons in modeling the sacred practice of recycling. What seems to die bespeaks a quiet truth: that which falls into the earth is never lost. The earth receives it and preserves it. Thus it becomes a nurturing source for new beginnings as another cycle of growth arises. This miracle of transformation is autumn’s prayer.”


********************************************


Joyce Rupp:

“My autumn memories as a child have deepened in me as I have grown older. They draw me into a season that engenders gratitude for both the material and spiritual harvests of years gone by. It is a season rich with wisdom, reminding me time and time again to treasure the beauty, appreciate what is, and then, let go when it is time.”


***********************************************

(Photo by Mohan Reddy – Pexels)


And finally, a poem by the 19th Century American poet, Edna St. Vincent Millay. (This poem is in the public domain.)


“God’s World”


O World, I cannot hold thee close enough!

Thy winds, the wide grey skies!

Thy mists, that roll and rise!

Thy woods, this autumn day, that ache and sag

And all but cry with colour! That gaunt crag

To crush! To lift the lean of that black bluff!

World, World, I cannot get thee close enough!


Long have I known a glory in it all,

But never knew I this;

Here such a passion is

As stretcheth me apart,–Lord I do fear

Thou’st made the world too beautiful this year;

My soul is all but out of me,–let fall

No burning leaf; prithee, let no bird call.



(Photo by Michael Morse – Pexels)

For reflection:

Did any of the above reflections stand out for you today? If so, which one(s)?

Did any photo catch your attention?

What would YOU say to the season of Autumn?



The video today is some drone footage of the autumn foliage in Canada and the U.S. The soft guitar music is a fitting accompaniment to the lovely sights you will see. (3 mins.)





I welcome you to write a comment below on the reflections, the photos, the video, or your own thoughts on fall. No matter how brief your comment may be, it is greatly appreciated by all our readers–and me!




8 Responses

  1. Morning blessings to all,
    I, too, have felt the deep sentiment expressed by Edna St. Vincent Millay:

    “Thou’st made the world too beautiful this year.”

    I will hold this prayer of gratitude close, especially this morning as I drive through the vibrant reds, brilliant oranges, and stunning yellows.

    Praise God!

    1. Joanne, That’s my favorite line from the poem. On many occasions, when I’ve been overwhelmed by the beauty of nature, I’ve found myself saying these very words… Thanks for responding! Melannie

  2. Good afternoon, Sr. Melannie…

    O seeds sprung loose from dying plants,
    Come! Come teach us to be generative.

    Just beautiful!

  3. I love Macrina’s description of fall as “sacred recycling”. It helps me reflect on what might be dying, or simply going dormant, for future growth.
    “Autumn leads the seasons in modeling the sacred practice of recycling. What seems to die bespeaks a quiet truth: that which falls into the earth is never lost.”

    And the stunning drone footage makes me want to be a bird and seek fall everywhere.

    And Joyce’s thoughts seem to embrace mindfulness:
    “It is a season rich with wisdom, reminding me time and time again to treasure the beauty, appreciate what is, and then, let go when it is time.”

    Thank you for your thoughtful and inspiring reflection on such a rich season.

  4. Melanie Here are my thoughts about this season God has given us another beautiful gift and it hurts to have to rake them up as if we are throwing His gift away. We are so lucky to have such a wonderful God . Have a nice day.

  5. This time of year, I always turn to Hartley Coleridge’s sonnet “November,” easily findable online. Peace and light to all! It’s been a while since I’ve been here. Grateful for a recent email from Sr Melannie.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Latest Blog Posts

A number of years ago I was struggling with someone, a co-worker who was about 15 years older than I was. I didn’t know him very well, but we rubbed shoulders at work from time to time. About once a month, for example, we were required to attend the same

April is national poetry month. As is my custom, I’m posting poems in honor of poetry’s marvelous beauty and power. Today I’m featuring three poems about Jesus by two friends of mine and myself. I suggest you read these poems slowly and aloud. The Cana Jesus by Pierre Eau Claire

Meet Sr. Melannie

Hi and welcome to my blog! I’m Sister Melannie, a Sister of Notre Dame residing in Chardon, Ohio, USA. I’ve been very lucky! I was raised in a loving family on a small farm in northeast Ohio. I also entered the SNDs right after high school. Over the years, my ministries have included high school and college teaching, novice director, congregational leadership, spiritual direction, retreat facilitating, and writing. I hope you enjoy “Sunflower Seeds” and will consider subscribing below. I’d love to have you in our “sunflower community.” Thank you!

Subscribe to Blog

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Loading

Upcoming Events

Finding God in the Ordinary and Amazing: An Afternoon with Sister Melannie

Sunday, May 19, 2024 – 1:30 – 4:00 Central – via zoom

Sponsored by the Portiuncula Center for Prayer – Frankfort, Illinois

Fee: Donation

For details visit: [email protected]

Weekend retreat at Villa Maria Education and Spirituality Center, Pulaski, PA
October 11-13, 2024

October 11-13, 2024

Details to follow

Retreat with the Sisters of Loretto, Nerinx, KY
September 8-13, 2024

September 8-13, 2024

Details to follow

Retreat at Lial Renewal Center, Whitehouse, OH
August 11-18, 2024

August 11-18, 2024

Retreat at Heartland Center for Spirituality, Great Bend, KS
April 14-19, 2024

April 14-19, 2024

Details to follow