“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” –Albert Camus
When Erin and I were going back and forth about what we would name our shop, we went through several iterations that all came back to the same theme: nature, togetherness, starting fresh, attitude.
I love words. I love to play with them and read them and research their origins. I love to study them in different languages and contexts. This is both a blessing and curse as I sometimes find it difficult to settle on the right words. Naming a shop or business? Major undertaking.
Now, this quote comes from Albert Camus who is generally takes on an attitude of a more doom-and-gloom nature, so in a way it doesn’t seem to fit, but literature—as I have always taught it, anyway—is subjective in nature, so interpret as you see fit, unless of course you can resurrect Mr. Camus and ask him what exactly he meant.
It actually comes from a play he wrote (The Misunderstanding (Le Malentendu) Act 2: 1944) where two characters questioning/debating the beauty (or lack there of) in their respective parts of the world. One character, when hearing that spring is merely a struggling rose in a monastery where the other resides, replies with “that’s not fair; you have autumn.” The other character seems not to know what autumn is, and is answered with this description:
“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”
The discussion continues with the character who still doesn’t see the beauty in this autumn and is really more inclined to see the world as it is—more existentialist suffering to follow.
So I guess this is a little more like Camus than I thought. Anyway, back to attitude. And interpretation. I prefer to see the world as the character of Martha, who sees the beauty and second chance for a leaf to become a flower in the season of autumn where others might only see death, decay…a slow decline into winter.
Does the second season of our life have to be about decline? Or can it be about a beauty renewed? A new vision of who we are that can only come with age and wisdom?
Here’s to finding your second spring, Ladies. If you don’t want to go it alone, join us while we find ours. No one has to do this life thing alone. Seriously, leave existentialist angst to the existentialists.