Hope, energy always follow

All the leaves have almost fallen. Nothing but the black skeleton of the branches remain in a lifeless pose.
It is a bleak season where all the colours and shades of flowers and shrubbery have disappeared, leaving only blackness and the grey shadows of the coming winter season.
The last of the leaves still need to be raked, having fallen with the drenching rain of the past week. It is one more chore to complete prior to seeing falling snow again.
Now that the leaves have left only the barren branches, the LED street lights that couldn’t penetrate through the leaf-filled branches now illuminate our yard, making the area much brighter at night.
Today is Hallowe’en, when all the ghosts, goblins, and masqueraded young people will walk door-to-door with their parents less than a heartbeat away providing protection against the darkness of the night and strangers.
Then this weekend, we will travel into the winter of darkness as we turn our clocks back one hour. It is a period that I detest. I feel robbed of daylight at both ends of the clock, going to work in the morning and returning at the end of the day in darkness.
Darkness surrounds us for almost five months. We break with darkness by lighting up our yards and homes with festive lights and hope during the Christmas season and quickly fall back into darkness as soon as the New Year is rung in.
Already I see the first lights of the season shining through the night.
I have watched as two young brothers have moved into a home across the street from me for the past two years. Active and full of energy, they would play outside until darkness folded in around them, practising their basketball moves for seven months of the year and in winter playing ball hockey on their grandfather’s driveway.
They, too, have moved indoors and will shortly move into their new home.
As all neighbourhoods go through upturns and downturns with families, our neighborhood is now at a low point as most of the young people have grown up and moved off to other centers for education and jobs.
The life of the youth has disappeared, but I suspect new couples will move into the neighbourhood as has happened in the past and the youth again will appear playing in yards and moving from yard to yard with the delightful sounds only youth can provide.
And as spring follows winter with hope and energy, new families will bring hope and energy back to our neighbourhood.