A Library at Dusk

I love the change of the seasons, and Autumn holds a special place in my heart. One of the reasons is because in the Northeastern part of the U.S. where I now live the foliage celebrates its final days before Winter with all the majesty and glory of a firework display.



Another reason why I love Autumn is that the shorter days and longer evenings still catch us off our guard. “It’s almost completely dark out and it’s only 5:00,” I’ll exclaim with surprise and some glee. Nature’s cycles never cease to amaze and delight me.

And our late afternoon activities somehow become more intimate, enveloped in an evening cloak, and illuminated as if by candlelight.

Passing by my local library at dusk, I see the books. I see my fellow readers. Each lit window drawing me in and telling its own narrative.









The scenes remind me that with the longer evenings comes an invitation to stay inside, to choose a good book, to settle into a comfortable armchair, and to read.

97 thoughts on “A Library at Dusk

    • The glow of the computer…. a year long season, right? It will be wonderful to have the darkness of Winter to lull us into even more reading.

      (I was just commenting on your blog while you were commenting on mine – odd coincidence!)

  1. I love that you’re almost sneaking in through the windows. Plus, that red on those trees is the only version of that red ever. There is only that red in fall when the trees change, and only certain trees. I love it. Keep sneaking. : )

    • You’re so right, that red is so specific to autumn – part of the beauty perhaps.

      Those photos do feel quite voyeuristic, don’t they?! I did have a good zoom so wasn’t as close as it seems but I was still afraid that one of them was going to turn around and catch me! I did make a point of not photographing their faces though.

      I’ll keep sneaking though!

      • Sometimes that’s what you have to do to really capture the truth of something. I loved these photos. You did a great job! You’re bringing joy to me and others and I’m sure the library-goers wouldn’t mind being photographed reading, learning and being a part of autumn.

    • Ah, Spring…. that unique delicate light green (what we call in French ” vert tendre” – tender green), being able to read outside again… Spring has its own magic (gnomes and all!!)

  2. Letizia this post brought a smile to my face, recalling fond memories of hours spent in the library as a young girl . . . and of course, the thought of curling up with a good book as the wind howls and snow flies outside, cup of tea or hot choc (with a dollop of Bailey’s perhaps!) in hand!

  3. You are indeed a kindred spirit. My favourite season is autumn – for me it is the time of new beginnings that I associate with going back to school and staking out my territory at the local library. Even the colours of the foliage seem to have an eager anticipation of winter, their time of rest before the huge transition of springtime. My cupboards have a fresh supply of tea leaves and I am looking for a new tea mug, my way of celebrating.

    Your library beckons a weary traveler and your photos allow us to peek in and savour the tantalizing knowledge that there are books waiting for us to embrace. Ah, so many journeys await us in autumn.

    “I don’t believe in colleges and universities. I believe in libraries because most students don’t have any money. When I graduated from high school, it was during the Depression and we had no money. I couldn’t go to college, so I went to the library three days a week for 10 years.” Ray Bradbury

    • Autumn as a new beginning, yes, I feel that so often. My new year always starts in September with the start of school (although the arrival of Spring also feels like the start of a new year as well. What doesn’t feel like the start of a new year? January. The middle of winter!).

      I love your idea of purchasing a new tea mug to celebrate autumn. I should do the same.

      Thanks, as always, for your lovely visit!

  4. The weather man tells me that it is going to snow flurry tonight…time to curl up in my overstuffed reading chair with a good book (hmmmmmm, what shall I pick?). Libraries here aren’t as quiet as they used to be. Evidently it’s okay to talk, and they now have “quiet rooms” which you can reserve if you need peace and quiet. Ugh.

    • How funny that silence is no longer the norm in some libraries. I guess to stay open and relevant they have to become more like cultural community centers. But like you I love that enforced silenced, those loud whispers, every cough and creaky chair heard throughout the building. Enjoy your book and early snow flurries!

    • I haven’t heard of that book, but love the idea of a winter book versus a fall book. I just finished Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Lowlands. I’d say it’s a good autumn book – not as literary as her earlier works, but storytelling at its finest so really invites you to want to stay indoors and find out what happens next. Will have to check out Chabon’s book this winter…

  5. Having lived in the tropics for years I do sometimes miss the colors of Autumn, but not the coming cold. The tropics have their own change of seasons, but it takes a sharp eye to notice. Love your picture. You live in a beautiful place, Letizia.

    • It’s true, Dannie, the seasons are so pronounced here. Two weeks go by and it’s a different universe at times.

      I miss seeing the photos of your tropical gardens. I think gardening really helps you see those differences in the seasons, as minute as they might be.

  6. That’s a great way of looking at the shorter days – as a chance for more reading and fireside hibernation. It even started to snow here today. I love autumn and the fall colors and your photos have such a feeling of comfort to them. Each peek through the window holds a promise of some kind of illumination, just like each book on the shelves inside.

    • So many people already seem to be getting snow! Autumn seems to be the shortest season, maybe that’s what makes it so special. I like what you wrote about the windows and the books in the library holding a promise… lovely.

  7. By the time autumn comes I am ready for it. We adore each season but I look forward to the crispness in the air and the return to making wonderful comfort food – lots of casseroles and sews. XX V.

  8. Nicely observed – I like the reflections of the trees on the glass.

    They did get me thinking a bit though. Warm and comfortable yes, and most of us are lucky to be able to access that comfort. But out there right now are so many who can only dream of warmth and shelter and are at the mercy of whatever the seasons will throw at them.

    • There’s no library near you in Mexico? I thought maybe a little one even in the store where you get your wifi or something.

      (Your comment almost sounds like the start of a poem….)

  9. Pingback: Great Blogs and the Winner Is… | Sheila Hurst

    • So glad you liked the photos. I passed by the library a few times during the evening and the warm light from the windows was so inviting that I kept telling myself I had to stop and take some photos one day!

  10. Gorgeous post, gorgeous! Love these pix.

    I end up with a girlish crush on autumn every year. After a crazy summer of running amok, I love how mother nature sends me inside to slow down, to reset my mind and body. A warm cup of tea, a blankie, a husband, some cats, and naturally…a good read. It’s lovely.

  11. Ahh. Autumn. My favorite season. I tend to hibernate in the winter, and this time of year is when I gather and store–from books to food to movies to extra writing time. 😉

  12. What a wonderful post. Autumn is so beautiful, and the image of a library to snuggle into as the days grow shorter is a great analogy to time and aging. There is a quiet desperation that nags at me when I see the leaves turn. Have I done enough with my life? Can I read more, learn more, do more before the winter rolls in? Wishing you well, Letizia.

    • I think that the sense of anxiety or rush can be a good thing as well – it signals a continuing curiosity, desire to learn, want for life; and in the end, that’s a good thing. Happy Autumn, Liesa – hope it’s a beautiful one.

  13. Hi Letizia,
    I love this post! The photos are lovely, and you have captured the beauty and mood of the season. Autumn is my favorite. I love the crisp weather, the striking colors, and then going inside to get warm and cozy.

    • Thanks, Naomi, I think it might be my favorite season as well. Just cool enough for the walks to be invigorating and for the evenings to call us indoors for a cozy night in, so true.

  14. I love your outside looking in perspective of the library, although I do imagine you like the urchin with your nose pressed again the window checking out the book goodness…the bookness. Miserable weather is conducive to book reading and that makes me happy, not that we need the excuse, eh? Eh? You have cheered me up this windy eve for me.

    • The ‘bookness’ of the library was definitely calling to me. I didn’t leave a nose print on the window, thank goodness, and fortunately no one (I think) noticed me lurking about. Hope the wind has died down so you can enjoy your reading in peace!

      • It has been a bit wind hectic here recently but nothing I can’t handle with my manly nature of hiding indoors hehe.

        I like that you would become a library stalker and your nose print was how the police found you…it’s like the most mad crime book ever!!!

  15. I could relate to every single word you said. I love the shortened days, the glow of books through a window, and everything else about the beauty of fall.

    My mother gets so depressed this time of year. The long nights make her melancholy. I always think it so odd that we’re so different. I am never more at peace than at this time of year. I always hope that some of my joy will rub off on her, but it doesn’t. She just tries to pass the time and make it through winter. I savor it.

    • It’s funny how some people enjoy this time of year and others feel blue around this time. I wonder if it’s that we enjoy indoor activities as much as outdoor activities or just that we’re wired differently. Anyway, hope you’re having a wonderful Autumn and happy to be home after your many recent travels.

  16. Ah, what lovely photos! The beauty of fall ALMOST makes up for the impending doom of winter… but I like your positive spin: it’s the perfect time of year to stay indoors with a book 🙂

  17. Your description of all the cold, early darkness, changing colors and cozying up inside is almost poetically beautiful, Letizia. You’re a true book lover, satisfied in every season in situation, and enjoying every page.

    • Thank you for the lovely words, Marylin! We’ve been lucky to have a particularly beautiful autumn so it’s been easy to be inspired this year. Wishing you a warm, cozy rest of autumn!

  18. The last time I tried to take photos like that, I had to make a statement to authorities. Six more months, and I can have my camera back. I find a good summer book is perfect for when the weather turns chilly, incidentally. what do you think, Letizia?

    • A literary peeping tom (peeping tom sawyer?), I love it! How interesting to read a summer book in the winter months. I never pay attention to the seasons in my books but now that you’ve brought it up, I will be thinking of if it.

  19. Hello 🙂 Thank you for dropping by my blog and clicking the Follow button. It is really appreciated!
    I’ve always loved the concept of winter because to me it involves what you wrote…staying in doors, it’s all cozy inside as the world sleeps under a white blanket of snow…and with the fire dancing in the fireplace, a hot drink, soft background music, good friends and a dog or two snoozing, there’s a good book in my hands…

    And the first image of the tree is beautiful!

  20. Amen! Winter is the “reading season” if there is such a thing. And the scene you describe is one of the many reasons I love working in a library!

    • It must be lovely to work in the library among people reading and researching. You must be tempted to look over their shoulders at times to see which book they are reading….

  21. I love the shorter days and longer nights of the fall and winter…. To me, it’s like natures invitation to go within, to introspect, to be at home with oneself and create…. Or to simply be at peace with oneself and the gift of the present. This is, no doubt, my favorite time of year. 😉

    I grew up in CT and can appreciate that colorful photo very much. Thank you for sharing.

    Happy day,

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