Just months ago orchards of sturdy trees stood in rows as straight as soldiers, lighting up the rural landscape with brilliant displays of frothy blossom.
Now in the early days of autumn their bows hang heavy with green and red apples, and trees are laden with ripe purple plums. Shiny cherries hang in twos like musical notes and bulbous pears await the fruit picker’s hands.
The vintner prepares to harvest bunches of grapes from the sloping hillsides, and the time has come to gather in the brewer’s hops which will dry in Kent’s pointed oast houses ready for next year’s ales.
Mighty combines travel back and forth, their rotating blades levelling the fields of swaying crops. Left in their path are bales of hay like so many golden chess pieces.
Soon Mother Nature will enjoy a well earned rest, for once again she has provided us with a harvest as great as any that has been before. Soon the fruit trees will shed their leaves and the soil below protect the dormant seeds and play host to the hibernating creatures of the undergrowth.
All around the world advances, each year different from the year before. But here in the Garden of England, next year and the after will see the familiar cycle repeat itself, exactly the same as it has in centuries past.
Pictures from DeviantArt