A chance encounter
Homeward bound, after an enjoyable morning shoot with a good friend, I passed by a stretch of Illinois woodland, draped in hoarfrost and bathed in the pale light of a November sun. Reunited with the prairie woodlands and oak savannah of the midwest, I am struck by how strange and beautiful they seem. For all the mountains and coastline that California can boast, seldom in my time there did I see the amber of morning illuminate a forest as brilliantly as this or kiss the frosted grasses one last time before the long dark of winter. Here is the woodland at the turning, caught between its fertile and furtive summer flush and its long, brooding winter's sleep, resplendent with a million delicate panes of stained glass in every gilded and ruddy shade of technicolor imaginable. Everywhere tousled by November's wheeze they fall in glory for an instant, unpaled and unspoiled, silhouetted against the autumn sky en route to a marshy, cold grave.