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  • Writer's pictureErwin Barona

Of Fall Colours and Little Resurrections

Fall Colours 101. Trees in general "breathe" and "feed" through a process called photosynthesis (yes, remember what you learned in primary school), thus also manufacturing the "energy" and nutrients the tree needs to survive. This process works best when the days are long and warm, and the sunlight that initiates this is absorbed through the tree's leaves. As the days become shorter, some trees "prepare" themselves for the cooler months by conserving the nutrients stored in their leaves into its trunk and roots, including the chlorophyll which is dominantly green-coloured. As the tree draws the chlorophyll from its leaves, this reveals the other various pigments of colour underneath greens, to spectacularly vibrant hues of reds, oranges, and yellows. Voila!

The trees remain dormant through the winter (practically dead as the trees stop growing), until the spring, when the warmth initiates the leaves' budding into greens again.

Autumn foliage does not change the same day of the year. Leaves turning earlier or later in the season depends on several factors; the amount of summer sunlight, rainfall, atmospheric conditions (like pollution), etc. Unfortunately, when the camera club went up to Frontenac, it was a bit disappointing to see that most of the trees' leaves have not turned yet. We were too early for the leaves' transformation. We managed to discover this lone tree; from which twenty of us jostled for the right composition. I will not be surprised if we had taken identical images from different cameras. I finally decided on an image that reflected the tree on the lake, as I stood on the rocky banks. It was a hard decision to "cut" the tree off the image. But this works for me.

Autumn foliage is much the same as our daily lives. Green has been the colour of life. Challenges may steer away from our paths, at times prompting us to change our course, our circumstances, our outlook; even turning things upside down, as it were. When this happens many get depressed, fleeting between self-preservation and self-destruction, in a state of limbo, remaining dormant at a lengthy time. On the other hand, many embrace the change, drawing back energy to take stock, to reflect on what was and how it should have been. Yes, the greens have changed; but they have turned into vibrant colours of reflection, of solitude, of serendipity, ready to spring into greens again at the appropriate time.

As I have mentioned in my previous blogpost, the greys that progress between white to black matter most, as we travel from life to death. This blog is just as similar, adding vibrant colour to daily life.

Learn from the changing autumn leaves into greens --- each day we wake as budding back into little resurrections each time we "fall". Voila!

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