It is an Autumn afternoon and the streets are brown with leaves. Children are coming home from school, calling to each other in the cool, windless air. I think of other Autumns that have come and gone: each like a strange, wonderful symphony: the Autumns of childhood, boyhood, manhood. I wonder what this Autumn will mean to me, what I shall think of when the memory of it returns to me in the years to come?
There was a time when the Autumn days seemed to me the most beautiful of all the year: something unseen and ancient whispered to me from the falling leaves, called to me from the wild-geese overhead. I had only to go out and walk and dream and wonder, and the strange, precious glory dwelling in the mystery of Autumn would steal into my heart and make me one with all.
What will this Autumn mean to me? I think that I know: the cycles of the old years have turned, a new path is being traced by the wheel of time, my life of reveries is fading into the quiet past. I feel that my place is not to be in loneness and dreams, but out among men, searching in their hearts for something precious, something to answer the mystery in my own.
Yes, I think that I know: there is divinity in the Inmost of men; there is something in me which knows that it is there. And so I have a new work, a new duty, of trying to see, to recognise, to encourage the divinity in men to come forth, to flame out and illumine the dreary dream that too many of us mistake for life. This Autumn can be the most wonderful of all; it can be the luminous veil of an inner, spiritual Autumn. Behind its beauty can shine the beauty of a divine universe.