As a child I loved the autumn. Leaves fell from a large chestnut tree and gathered into drifts in the garden. I raked them into a pile and tended it carefully, adding fresh armfuls as the weeks went by. Before long, the piles grew large enough to fill several bathtubs. Again and again, I’d leap into the leaves from the low branches of the tree. Once inside, I’d wriggle until I was entirely submerged and lie buried in the rustle, lost in the curious smells.
– My leaf piles were both places to hide and worlds to explore. But as months went by, the piles shrank. It became harder to submerge myself. I investigated, reaching down into the deepest regions of the the heap, pulling out damp handfuls of what looked less and less like leaves, and more and more like soil. Worms started to appear. Were they carrying the soil up into the pile, or the leaves down into the soil? I was never sure. My sense was that the pile of leaves was sinking, but if it was sinking, what was it sinking into? How deep was the soil? What kept the world afloat on this solid sea?Entangled Life: How Fungi Make Our Worlds, Change Our Minds & Shape Our Futures. pgs 223, 224
We’ll let biologist Merlin Sheldrake usher us into autumn.
His book Entangled Life deserves its plaudits.