The 36 Stages of Melancholia

Charles Courbet, Melancholia (1914)

1. Discovering the first fallen leaf on the sidewalk. 2. A couple of discolored leaves, some of which you would want to pick up. 3. Checking out the branches of trees, almost empty. 4. Kicking a small heap of rotten brown stuff. 5. A group of city workers handling leave blowers. 6. A cold that doesn't come. 6. The darkening afternoons. 7. Stormy weather, fantasizing about the end of the world. 8. Going to bed earlier and earlier, with a book. 9. Dreaming of you, naked in a glass elevator, stuck between 9 & 10. 10. Observing everything is grey and will stay that way for the foreseeable future. 11. Fighting the cold. 12. Shivering, trembling, chattering teeth. 13. Embracing the cold. 14. Frost. 15. Checking the ice. 16. Enchanted by the silence of the snow. 17. Playing in the snow, not un-cub-like. 18. Bored by the snow. 19. Disgusted by the melting. 20. Taken aback by the thaw. 21. Appalled by the weakness, the easy surrender, the mediocrity. 22. Waiting for the spring. 23. Studying the branches: nothing yet. 24. Tiny buds, bulbs, at last. 25. Surprised by the spontaneous blossoming. 26. Worried about the early blossoms during rain, wind and cold. 27. Basking in the blossom, in its fullest, decadent splendor. 28. Pointing out the exuberance of spring to a friend who is not listening. 29. The sudden disappearance of all blossom; the branches emptying out again. 30. The warmth of the sunshine. 31. The depressing heat. 32. Swallowing salt water. 33. Unable to walk barefoot on asphalt. 34. Being kept awake by a mosquito. 35. Late light. 36. Longer shadows.