Friday, October 30, 2009

the trees are in their autumn beauty

autumn days can be clear and cold and rich.
the eye fills with golds, russets, crimsons, all the shades of orange.
the air is thinner.
see the clear weak blue of the autumn sky.
smell the wet wood, the damp leaves, the early steel-blue edge of frost.
feel the thin fingers of winter already reaching down from the far north.

i love the way the russian artist isaak levitan brings all those sensations together in his paintings.


isaak levitan golden fall

the trees are in their autumn beauty,
the woodland paths are dry
~
under the october twilight
the water mirrors a still sky

isaak levitan the lake

(words excerpted from) "the wild swans at coole" william butler yeats

17 comments:

Jenny Stevning said...

Today it was 70 degrees. To us, that feels like Autumn. Silly, I know. Still not a tree has changed. Although, I did find one red leaf as I walked along the sidewalk. I took the leaf home with me.
Ahhhhhh...as I said before...my vicarious Autumn. I love it!!! Thanks!

willow said...

I have several Levitan pieces in my online art file, including these two! I love his delightful style. "steel-blue edge of frost"...love that.

steven said...

hi willow - i love levitan's work and one day i hope to see them face-to-face. i know that frost is white, but there are times in the early morning when it has that blueish tint . . . . just in case anyone thinks i'm getting too poetic for my boots! have a lovely day at the manor willow. steven

steven said...

jenny seventy degrees feels good in my head right now! many of the trees have let their leaves go now. the floors of the woods are carpetted in all the different shades and as some of the leaves are beginning to decay they pick up all sorts of amazing shades. to see it you have to slow down and actually look closely at them though. if you just walk on through - well it's pretty but the real beauty at this point in time is in the detail. have a peaceful day out there. steven

Golden West said...

Spring eases us into summer and autumn eases us unto winter - nicely planned, that!

Crafty Green Poet said...

gorgeous paintings, autumn is just full of wonderful colour...

Crafty Green Poet said...

gorgeous paintings, autumn is just full of wonderful colour...

Linda said...

I love "the thin fingers of fall".... very poetic words, sir.

Isaak Levitan has very expressive work. Does he paint on board or canvas?

Our trees are dropping all their leaves all at once it seems. Last year the red maple stayed brilliant for almost a month. This year.... two days! I was shocked the leaves fell so quickly. They were late getting started in Toronto. The weather warmed up mid October.

Happy belated birthday Lexie! Does your dad make you do twice as much work on projects than the other kids do? My children used to complain..... teacher's kids.

Margaret Pangert said...

Beautiful images, Steven! I love the clouds and the golden grasses reflecting in the lake and the beautiful hues of blue. You can't get closer to nature than Yeats! i visited Coole once: pastoral, a big tower, no swans then.
I hope Lexie, the lovely young lady, had a happy birthday! Hugs

steven said...

golden west - you know what - i do like that!! the seasons used to meld more gradually into each other. my experiencing of them now is that the change is more precipitous. but there's something to what you say because the spring does move more slowly into summer and the autumn more gently into winter than summer to autumn. but don't quote me on any of this because really the seasons, the weather - well i get what i get and i find my joy in it somewhere! have a lovely evening. steven

steven said...

hi crafty green - thankyou, thankyou!! steven

steven said...

hi linda - the trees are almost bare now.

this from lexie: "thankyou: no my parents don't make me do twice as much homework. i just work really hard naturally. but the other kids think i'm really smart because i have a principal and a teacher for parents!" so there you are linda!!! have a lovely evening. steven

steven said...

hello margaret, thankyou and i agree! i am so amazed that you got to see coole for real!! i passed on your greetings to lexie. she asked me to say "thanks". we had a little party with cake and balloons and presents and little excitements! have a lovely evening margaret, steven

ellen abbott said...

I like these paintings and I really like that you find all this wonderful stuff for me to enjoy.

Rachel Fenton said...

Yoo hoo - it's not autumn! Not here at least! "June is bursting out all over"...except in the southern hemisphere June is called November...mightily confusing!

Bee said...

We've had a Yeatsian October -- still and dry. November woke up all wet and blustery, though!

steven said...

hello bee... october has been a mixture of relatively mild (14 celsius) days and below zero nights, with rain and wind every so often. i can't complain. i can still ride my bike to and from school every day. weekends i can do longer rides. i'll take it. steven