The autumn leaves can dazzle us with their magnificent colors: deep red, purple, yellow, gold, bronze, in countless variations and combinations. Then, shortly after having shown their unspeakable beauty, they fall to the ground and die. The barren trees remind us that winter is near. Likewise, the autumn of life has the potential to be very colorful: wisdom, humor, care, patience, and joy may bloom splendidly just before we fall to the ground and die.
As we look at the barren trees and remember our dead, let us be grateful for the beauty we saw in them and wait hopefully for a new spring.
-Fr. Henri Nouwen