Monday, September 3, 2012

Reflections on September

by Julia Buckley

September is always a relief after hot August, and it's a precursor of beautiful Autumn. But our nation has some terrible memories associated with this month that may have blotted out other positive associations. So here's a quick look at some things we value about September.  ( The first few facts are borrowed from Wikipedia).

* September is the ninth month of the year on our calendar, but it derives from the Latin word "septem," or seven, because it was the seventh month on the Roman calendar until 46 B.C.

* German Oktoberfest is celebrated at the end of September.

* On the first Sunday in September, the regatta storica parade is staged in Venice.

* September in the Northern hemisphere is equivalent to March in the Southern hemisphere and vice versa.

* September's birthstone is the beautiful sapphire, and its flowers are the forget-me-not, the morning glory, and the aster.

* Many beautiful songs and poems have been written in honor of September.  Here are some tunes you might remember (from users.globalnet):

Come September                                               Nathalie Imbruglia : 2001
It Might As Well Rain Until September               Carole King : 1962
My September Love                                          David Whitfield : 1956
See You In September (Edwards/Wayne)         The Tempos : 1959
See You In September (Edwards/Wayne)         The Happenings : 1966
September                                                         Earth Wind & Fire : 1979
September In The Rain                                       Dinah Washington : 1961
September Morn (Diamond)                              Neil Diamond : 1980
September Song (Anderson/Weill)                     The Ravens : 1948
September Song (Anderson/Weill)                     Ian McCulloch : 1984
Here are some fun YouTube links of a few of these songs: I love that last song! And now I leave you with the words of William Wordworth: "Departing summer hath assumed An aspect tenderly illumed, The gentlest look of spring; That calls from yonder leafy shade, Unfaded, yet prepared to fade, A timely carolling." Wordsworth, September


Sheila Connolly said...

For those of us who actually liked school (I did, which may explain why I kept going back for more), September always seems like the beginning of the year, full of energy.

There's a line in a song that's been bugging me for years, since I can't remember the rest of the song, much less the title: "I remember/Sweet September..." Can anyone help?

Elizabeth Zelvin said...

You're right about the painful associations, especially for us New Yorkers. What's worst about it is that what triggers the memories is the perfect, crystal-clear fall weather that characterized September 2001, day after heartlessly beautiful day. On the bright side, 11 years later, we're still here!

Julia Buckley said...

Sheila, the only song I can think of that's similar is the one that starts "Try to remember that kind of September . . ." but that's not the same one, is it? That's called TRY TO REMEMBER by the Sandpipers.

Liz, I can only imagine what it feels like to live where you do and then to have September roll around each year, with all its associations. Yet I do believe that fall would be the season to see New York, for the very reason you describe.

Sandra Parshall said...

Sheila, are you thinking of Josh Gracin's "Sweet September"? Google LYRICS "Sweet September" and check it out.

Autumn always makes me sad. It's as if the whole world is dying. Here in the DC area, we have a few weeks of summer left, though, and a few more tropical storms/hurricanes to watch and worry about.

Sheila Connolly said...

When I Google "I remember sweet September" I get inundated with Kenny Logins, which is too late. I'm thinking this song is 1960s or earlier, and it may include something about a man who went to war. Or my brain is faling rapidly.

Julia Buckley said...


Interestingly I am just the opposite--autumn is the one month that makes me feel really alive and vigorous. Something about the cold weather wakes up what had lain dormant in the heat, I guess. But these days it's never clear if fall will be cold or just more of the same . . .

Sheila, let us know when you find it!

Julia Buckley said...

Sorry--make that "autumn is the one SEASON that makes me feel alive." Duh.

JJM said...

How right you are, Julia, about the sad associations. Tell me you don't automatically scan the skyline of any photo or film of New York for two iconic towers: before? or after? ...

The song "Try to Remember" may have been covered by a band called the Sandpipers, btw, but it's originally from one of my all-time favourite musicals: The Fantasticks.


Julia Buckley said...

Mario--despite my LOVE of musicals, that is one I've never seen. I'll have to remedy that.

You're absolutely right, I do look at that, and my kids love re-runs of the show FRIENDS, which was set in Manhattan and has endless views of the Twin Towers. I also just saw Man on a Wire, which has tons of footage of the building of the towers--both experiences are poignant and sad.

I also feel differently looking at planes in the sky. I can never see one without at least a 1% niggling worry that it will somehow plunge from the sky.

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