This weekend, at the end of summer, we saw life resumed. Perhaps the new queen had even been born in our cedar and, having successfully established a new colony, had brought her daughters back to a location she remembered. Or perhaps, to a passing swarm, it simply looked like a great home site, conveniently vacant. After Jon gave me the happy news, I tried unsuccessfuly to photograph the industrious sisters but our old cedar was once again in the honey business and no one had time to sit for a portrait. The workers poured in and out, dropping through the air from the treetops and leaping back out seconds later.
I like to think that the meadow is still making golden sweetness even now as it winds down. Certainly fruit trees and grape vines have flourished this wet summer and enough bees survived to pollinate them. Fall in Canada is garbed in the purples of asters, wild grapes, knapweed and chickory, and the cadmium yellows of goldenrod and rudbeckia; it is indeed the "(s)eason of mists and mellow fruitfulness," as the dying and homesick John Keats described it in Italy. We are so lucky to live in this temperate clime and to enjoy the bounty that is autumn. I think that I shall go to eat a grape or two, while trying to remain mindful of whom to thank.