When I lived in Michigan, where I was born and grew up (more or less), autumn always felt like a beginning to me, not a harbinger of the end. Maybe it’s because I was born in autumn, but that was always my favorite time of year. It was a relief from the heat and humidity of the summer, for one thing. I never liked summer all that much.
Then I moved to Northern California where autumn just wasn’t the same. Not that there’s anything wrong with it. It just doesn’t smack you in the senses with smoldering foliage, crisp temperatures, and startlingly blue skies. It’s a subtler thing. Maybe my appreciation for subtlety is lacking.
I lived north of San Francisco for 27 years before discovering the Southwest and unexpectedly falling in love with it. Open skies. Lots of sunny days. Not too much snow in the winter. And hot, dry summers. Oh, my! I’m a convert to summer in the High Desert. But living in New Mexico has done nothing to bring back the sense of expectation I used to feel at this time of year.
And then something happened. Well, several things happened, but the turning point was getting invited to #JournalChat Live by Dawn Herring. She was kind enough to feature a post from Nine Paths titled Keywords: The Madeleines of Journal Writing. So many good and interesting ideas were exchanged, but the one that made the strongest impression came from Dawn when she mentioned choosing a keyword for a year to help focus on our goals.
A year seems like a long period of time for me to try to stay focused on a single thing. But I love the concept. So in honor of the autumnal equinox, I’ve decided to choose a keyword for the season. I’d already developed my own list of personal keywords and have been using them in my journal writing. Picking one for autumn was easy. And that keyword is . . . velocity.
We also talked about using meditation, poetry, music, and art along with keywords. Therefore, I’ve chosen a song to go with my keyword. My theme song for autumn is Glad Tidings by Van Morrison.
My running start on autumn 2012 includes getting this blog off the ground. It’s been in the idea stage for too long, and with velocity as my keyword, the time to launch is now.
Don’t it gratify when you see it materialize
Right in front of your eyes
La, la, la, la la, la, la, la la, la, la, la
Thanks so much for the inspiration, Dawn! I hope I can return the favor sometime.
Does anyone else have a keyword and/or a theme song for autumn? If you do, please share in the comments.