How swift the silent succession of the months 1 September seems to tread upon the train of June, it is so quickly here, so quickly gone. The Goldenrod is the first plume of the year's hearse, yet when its earliest yellow feathers wave we burn under the hot breath of summer, but ere they lose all their gold, the hand of death is on the grass, and the brown leaves have fallen.
A cold rain patters on the gravel walk, and the branches of the trees are dripping as they hang unstirred. The sky is gloomy and leaden, - one vast gray cloud sullenly enwraps the heavens. There is no hope, no outlook; all is sad and drear, - rain over head, a wet earth under foot. Summer has gone; the chill of autumn is here. But hark 1 what is that murmur? It is the northwest wind blowing his distant horn, and in a twinkling the leaden skies are broken with windows of light. The gray scud whisks up toward the zenith, the wet trees shake off their burden, and wave joyfully in the keen breeze. October comes! What though his tramp is over the dead leaves! He comes like a warrior from battle, fresh and strong, inspiriting and brave. "Be not cast down!" he cries, "by the death of fair summer. Bold winter succeeds to the throne. He is a king worth having, and his reign shall restore your vigor, men of the north! He helps to make you what you are! Behind him, hidden by his furry mantle, lurks the spring, and then once more the dead summer shall be reborn, and the world shall be again all blossom and music!"
So with this bracing note, October passes on, while, cheered by hope and softened by memory, we leave the old place to sleep awhile, and turn to our winter fire, and the companionship of men and books, in lieu of birds, and trees, and flowers, which have gladdened us for half a year.