THE SEPTEMBER ISSUE
Film by Richard Kern featuring Heaven Starr
Text by Susan Winget
Somewhere around the end of August it creeps up suddenly. The day goes missing. The dark cool cover of night arrives at 8 rather then 8:45. We are drunk on the abundance of farmer’s markets when suddenly we need a little sweater to walk the dog after dinner. The creeping September issue looms.That seasonal, queasy back-to-school gnawing worry, once about new classrooms, camp absent friendship-mending and outfit traumas, now presenting in the adult guise of the general return to expectations, schedules and shoes.
We all carry a slightly awkward, invisible backpack at this time every year, filled with all the energy and emotions of “getting back to it.” Our businesses are in full throttle, fashion shows push us into wardrobing crisis, galleries gear up for the big events of fall, midterms loom like approaching battle fire in the shrinking distance. SCOTUS horror stories and college applications wipe our summer out. Goodbye warm, wanton, naked season of the sun! The elder autumnal equinox is here. It is officially fall.
We are, according to the old myths, supposed to celebrate the Mysteries, let the ‘Woman become the Crone’, wine it up in a bacchanalia of payoffs for hard labors of the growing season. But as the majority of us are not making our living from the cycles of the earth, the opposite is the case. Personally, I barely take time off in the summer, and vacations of the traditional summer variety make me very anxious. But even I, a summer ignorer, am feeling the weight of the season change. I have been craving old school style tomato sandwiches, on white bread with mayonnaise, salt and pepper, and my mind is on the fall at home.
No where is the fall more celebrated than in New England, where the tree hysteria is a visual Bernstein score every year. But the best secret of fall in coastal New England is the glory of the warm water and empty, not hot beaches. Some of the best swims of my life have been in the early fall on Lucy Vincent Beach in Martha’s Vineyard.
My people always swim the warm of the day throughout the fall, hanging onto summer as long as humanly possible. Deep into his 80's my dad and my brothers would wait for tide to be right and the sun to be high, to wade into Long Island Sound for a daily swim through the belly of October and even a few rare November beginnings. That thought makes me happy and miss those days terribly.
With that in mind, as we are very busy here at LADY making Marshmallow turtlenecks and skirts and long slender knit dresses for our soon to be pop-up sales, may we suggest riding that last warm patch of daylight with water, friends and the easiest of picnics this weekend? We have a long winter ahead of us, and an election, and we are getting ready to grow up our little marshmallow into a bigger baby.
So today we are going swimming with Heaven, in honor of the last kiss of summer, in honor of freedom for all of us once and for all. Pack up some food and get your people, there is so much to talk through over a picnic and a swim today. Let’s do it.