Yes, indeed, that's a forsythia, in bloom, in my yard, today. Honest! Southwestern-Ohio, a week before Thanksgiving! An entire head-high bush bedecked in bright yellow flowers. And looking about as out of place as a nudist at a Baptist pie-social.
In case you're wondering, when I snapped this mid-afternoon portrait, the temperature under a dim, dirty-wool November sky, was a chilly 41˚F, though the wind and dampness made it feel more like the low-30˚s.
I have no idea what prompted such an unseasonable action. Temperatures lately have been up and down, but no more than during most such late-autumn periods. We've had nights in the upper-20˚s, too, several frosts, and one light snow that lingered a day or so on the ground. Our woodstove has been going, day and night—when I remembered to feed in another log—for the most part of several weeks.
Moreover, my forsythias are decidedly not of a jump-the-gun disposition. They are always laggards, the last around to bloom. Each spring, when other area forsythias are heralding the season with their jaunty golden boughs, mine are huddled beside the driveway like clumps of dead sticks. Embarrassing. Sometimes to the point that, in a fit of pique, I stomp out and threaten them: If you continue acting this way, I swear I'll prune you so low you'll look like a ground cover!
Of course my commination has absolutely no effect. They might bloom the next day…or the next week, but not until the spirit moves them. Which it has obviously done recently.
So what's next? Lilacs for Christmas?