in one of my earlier memories of autumn, it is after school, and i am walking by aunt mary’s house in austin. it must be magazine selling time at our school because that’s the only reason i can think of to explain why i am in that neighborhood.
my sneakered feet kick through piles of orange and brown leaves covering the sidewalks, making the leaves fly up against my bare legs.
on a recent run, the fallen leaves were pushed to the sides of the streets that i pound my feet on, and suddenly i felt like kicking through leaves. i veered to the left and kicked up the leaves with my once-again sneakered feet.
the st. john’s campus is beautiful to begin with, but then you add in fall, and it turns transcendent. when you walk from the bus stop to the classroom buildings, the lawn stretching out in front of the quad, the air just crisp enough, the overwhelming presence of trees, it’s like you are home.
there is a tree in front of simons hall that turns brilliant orangey-red. students dwell under it, kick up its fallen leaves, play guitar underneath. it’s known as the god tree.
but wander to the woods and the hue turns to yellow. the trails in the woods meander over hills and along lake sagatagan out to the chapel. all along, you feel like you are floating through a yellow wonderland.
when i dream of universities and colleges, it is some variation of st. john’s, not my alma mater.