The bookends of summer are a human construct. Memorial Day to Labor Day, an imaginary definition we've given to a season that fits neatly into another man-made timeline, the school year. And yet, many a morning directly proceeding Labor Day, I inhale a smoky spicy autumnal scent newly lingering in the morning fog. There is a heavier blanket of chill dew coating my feet as I walk to the field that seemingly wasn't there just a week ago. The pearlescent gray of twilight creeps in earlier and earlier these evenings, widening the gap, not unwelcomingly so, between dinner times and bedtimes. How does Nature acquiesce so to our strangely human seasonality? Or is that, in some deeply hidden wild of ourselves we are still brushing against our agrarian roots, our hunter/gatherer/animal selves that still notice when the animal coats thicken, when the berries ripen, when the winds blow stronger and the moon shines clearer? I'm not sure. What I do know is that we are in the time of straddling the seasons, a bridge is being woven, minute by golden minute stretching across the chasm, one side summer still, one side autumn next. The garden rides this distinction with equanimity and the farm chores reflect this framework. The assertive tastes of summer are still shining forth in tomato and basil, but the shallots are fattening up, the potatoes secreting sugars underground. One evening we dine on cucumber, zucchini, all of the tomatoes, the next we roast a fat sassy rooster and accompany him with an equally fat but less sassy cabbage. We begin the slow steady climb that is Autumn. We still pick bucket loads of tomatoes for your canning pleasure. We still chop basil extravagantly in all things. We snack on cukes straight from the vine. And yet. We harvest the first of many roosters, the biggest, the meanest. We pull honey frames from hives and wait for the spinner to arrive so we can jar that liquid gold. I keep an eye to the leeks that are growing still, straight and green in their arrow tops above soil. I sow fall field greens and radish seeds in faith of a gentle and forgiving autumn. The orange winter squash flirt more boldly between the waning greens that nursed them along, soon, very soon, ready to be picked and cured wherever we can find the room. And so, really, who adjusts to who's timeline? The winds laugh as they breeze at our watches and calendars, the geese chortle at out timelines as the soar past, the bees buzz in amusement through the goldenrod as we pack away our summer whites, and the garden grows on throughout it all in quiet satisfaction.