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Autumn, Canberra's cheap Hawaiian shirt

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Canberra readers! Come closer. I have a secret, a true confession to whisper to you. Lots of you will scarcely believe your ears and will be left what the tabloids call "ashen-faced".

But then, many of you may feel liberated by what I am about to confess because you, too, have long harboured the same secret belief in your bosoms, afraid to speak up for fear that you are perverse and alone.

Autumn leaves on La Perouse Street, Red Hill. Photo: Sitthixay Ditthavong

And so, I emerge hesitantly from the closet to whisper that leafy Canberra's autumn is for me the Season From Hell. As an aesthete who cares about the looks of everything, I find the colours of autumn leaves lurid and disgusting.

As I write the city's parks and streetscapes (those cursed with deciduous trees) are approaching peak gaudiness and Canberra fans of this ugliness are reaching peak gush.

Wednesday's edition of this newspaper contained a misguided song of praise to autumn's barbarous leaf colours which included a kind of guide (shudder!) to where these orgies of deciduousness can be seen at their most orgiastic, and (horror!) the annual Times invitation to readers to send in their photographs of these horrors.

Meanwhile, ABC television finishes its 7.30 news bulletin with a viewer's photograph, shocking to aesthetes, of either an autumn sunset........

© Canberra Times