I finish putting the newly pressed Chardonnay into barrel as the sun stoops under the horizon. We celebrate with some lovely wine and then I head off into the purpling night. I trailer the pressings to the vineyard, where they’ll join the new compost pile. This pile started with the shoots and leaves topped from the vines just prior to netting along with a now browning pile of hand pulled weeds. A reddish moon is lifting above the trees and Jupiter twinkles alongside. I’m zombificated. This can keep until morning. I unhitch the trailer as a breeze gusts into the peppies.
Morning arrives clear and cool, the moon hanging watchfully in a cerulean sky, smell of smoke still present. I pad down to the vines and begin forking masses of seeds and skins and stems into the red and brown pile of compost. Another year has shot by, the cycle continues.
I wander down to the Chardonnay to give thanks. The energy in the vines has already shifted - altered by the grapes being lifted. It’s palpable. Having released the grapes, the plants are bringing their energy down and inwards. The leaves will continue to senesce, to yellow and brown and fall. Each vine will go deeply within, connecting with the mystery in profound privacy throughout the winter. The dream of Persephone. Finding strength and renewal in the quiet, reemerging revitalized in the spring. This endless cycle is celebrated in the wine.