I’ll admit to taking the words out of context and forming a meaning of my own. I’ve always loved one small section of the lyrics and all of the music of “September Song.” I think it’s because this is my favorite month of the year, the beginning of my favorite season. Mama and I disagreed about this. She liked the promise of spring and thought autumn contained foreboding of winter months ahead.
I’ve tried to figure this out from time to time. I share her sense of foreboding. I love minor music, poignant stories, and the melancholy of the season in spite of my permanently half-full glass. Go figure. Maybe it doesn’t have to be explained. The words I like in the song have a wistful feel.
“But it's a long, long while from May to December
And the days grow short when you reach September.”
My welcome to September includes:
• Wonderful cool weather, or in South Mississippi at least it’s promise in cooler mornings
I’ve always been warmer than anyone in the room. I love cool. You can ask my friend Jane Allison who is cold-natured and never comfortable in the same place that I am.
• A few weeknights and all day Saturday SEC football with exciting endings
I anticipate games like Friday night’s double change of the lead in the last two minutes of the Ole Miss – Vanderbilt game. Showing my bias, I am talking here about real SEC teams. If you look at a map, you can see that Texas is not in the Southeast. That’s all I’m going to say about that.
• Anticipation of fall flowers
As I eat supper, I watch goldenrod swaying in the breeze on the back of our lot, laden with flower buds just ready to pop open. The front bed holds Mama’s old fashioned mums mingled with my sister Gwyn’s asters crowding each other for room, weighed down with coming blossoms that will lean across the flowerbed border into the yard. They will all be in full bloom before the month is over.
• Bountiful butterflies
Tiny nondescript ones I cannot name, common yellow sulphurs, orange viceroys, and elegant emperors have found my yard by this time of year and fill it with flights of fancy.
• An order of firewood
There will be a wait to use it, but traditionally my husband orders firewood for my birthday present – another clue that I’m not exactly “normal” since I prefer this to flowers, perfume, or even chocolates. [Adding another number with the birthday is not the plus it used to be, except that I am grateful for another good year.] The present is a precursor to winter days when I read a good book, sip a cup of hot chocolate, and get up occasionally to stir the fire – a joy in life I inherited from my grandfather.
Summer, with its heat, is not my favorite season. It has indeed been a long while from May to September.