The summer-flower has run to seed,
And yellow is the woodland bough;
And every leaf of bush and weed
Is tipt with autumn’s pencil now.
More coldly blows the autumn-breeze;
Old winter grins a blast between;
The north-winds rise and strip the trees,
And desolation shuts the scene.
These are the first and last verses of a poem called Autumn by John Clare – I’ve left out the middle 39 verses for fear of losing your attention. Anyway, the point is, autumn’s here so ready yourselves for the lighting of the fire. Yes this is my pet subject (after coffee-making) but I do get excited at the thought of a real fire – whether it’s an open fire or one encased in a woodburning stove. To replenish the pile of logs outside our front door I’ve already arranged a Saturday wood-chopping session in my mate’s private bit of woodland, followed by a singalong round a camp fire (can fires be camp?). Perfect.