Autumn is a season of change, described in words such as harvest, reap and falling leaves. Haystacks and the smoky smell of homecoming bonfires also clearly signal the autumn season. A list of 500 essential seasonal words, developed by Professor Kenkichu Yamamoto for composers of Renku, uses categories, such as animals and the heavens, to identify descriptive autumn words. His animal words for describing fall include migrating birds and dragonfly, bringing hunting season and hibernation to mind.
Fall color, tree leaves transforming to brilliant reds and yellows, and the appearance of chrysanthemums and pumpkins in store windows are sure signs of fall and excellent words to describe the season. The apple harvest means tangy cider and hayrides with wagons full of freshly baled hay and cornstalks for added ambiance. Fall, of course, also means Halloween, haunted houses, and trick or treating.
Outdoor activities change in autumn and certain words, such as football, tailgating and back-to-school, immediately call up the season. Not all autumn words are full of color and vibrance, some words such as decay and foraging also mark the season. Putting up storm windows, getting out sweaters, raking leaves and the harvest moon signal late autumn's transition to winter and open the door to another set of descriptive seasonal words.