Henry David Thoreau
by Dominique Gaudin
Woodsburner: A Novel
by ~ John Pipkin
Reading by Brett Barry.
and Other Natural History Essays
Walden and Other Writings
6" Display, U.S. & International Wireless
10. A pleasant day, especially the forenoon. Thermometer 16° at
noon. Some would call it Indian summer, but it does not deserve to be
called summer; grows cool in afternoon when I go -
To Baker Farm aspen via Cliffs.
From Fair Haven Hill, using my glass, I think that I can see some of the snow of the 7th still left on the brow of Uncannunuc. It is a light line, lying close along under the edge of a wood which covers the summit, which has protected it. I can understand how much nearer they must feel to winter who live in plain sight of that than we do. I think that I could not have detected the edge of the forest if it had not been for the snow.
In the path below the Cliff, I see some blue-stemmed goldenrod turned yellow as well as purple. The Jersey tea is fallen, all but the terminal leaves. These, however, are the greenest and apparently least changed of any indigenous plant, unless it be the sweet-fern. Withered leaves generally, though they remain on the trees, are drooping. As I go through the hazel bushes toward the sun, I notice the silvery light reflected from the fine down on their tender twigs, this year's growth. This apparently protects them against the winter. The very armor that Nature puts on reminds you of the foe she would resist. Thus a November phenomenon - the silvery light reflected from a myriad of downy surfaces.
I look out westward across Fair Haven Pond. The warmer colors are now rare. A cool and silvery light is the prevailing one; dark-blue or slate-colored clouds in the west, and the still going down in them. All the light of November may be called an afterglow.
Hearing in the oak and near by a sound as if some one had broken a twig, I looked up and saw a jay pecking at an acorn. There were several jays busily gathering acorns on a scarlet oak. I could hear them break them off. They then flew to a suitable limb and, placing the acorn under one foot, hammered away at it busily, looking round from time to time, to see if any foe was approaching, and soon reached the meat and nibbled at it, holding up their heads to swallow, while they held it very firmly with their claws. (Their hammering made a sound like the woodpecker's.) Nevertheless it sometimes dropped to the ground before they had done with it.
November 10, 1858
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