Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Late autumn – November – has always been one of my favorite times of the year. Oh, I have moments complaining about the cold and coming snow, but I don’t really have my heart in it. As the days grow shorter and the weather spirals down towards winter, I’m find myself feeling happy, and reveling in the sights and sounds and smells of the season – a bird’s nest revealed in a newly-bared tree, the faint honking of invisible geese, the metallic hint of snow in the air. Last weekend it was overcast and rained off and on all Saturday. In a break between the drizzles I went out with my camera and took a photo of my road trailing off into the chilly distance, and of the puddle at my feet.

I write a lot of my own poetry about autumn, but I’m not the only one who loves this time of year. I record autumn poems by others in a little journal book as I come across them. Two of my favorites are by Emily Bronte, and Robert Frost. Here is Frost's verse, celebrating the sombre beauty of the season.

My November Guest

My Sorrow, when she's here with me,
Thinks these dark days of autumn rain
Are beautiful as days can be;
She loves the bare, the withered tree;
She walks the sodden pasture lane.

Her pleasure will not let me stay.
She talks and I am fain to list:
She's glad the birds are gone away,
She's glad her simple worsted gray
Is silver now with clinging mist.

The desolate, deserted trees,
The faded earth, the heavy sky,
The beauties she so truly sees,
She thinks I have no eye for these,
And vexes me for reason why.

Not yesterday I learned to know
The love of bare November days
Before the coming of the snow,
But it were vain to tell her so,
And they are better for her praise.


Aleta said...

*sigh* beautiful poem and one of my favorite poets too. Thank you for posting it and also of the pictures ~ perfect with the poem. We have an abundance of green here, as the temperatures don't get so cold, but I love the chilly air.

bobbie said...

And one of my favorites as well.
I do love autumn in general. But not the month of November. So many sad anniversaries during this month for me. I just get through it, and then take a deep breath and start over in December.

Sylvia K said...

I love autumn, too, but for some reason this started out a dark day and not just the weather. Not sure why that happens now and then, but it does -- probably a good thing I'm going to play with the kiddies today. I love the poem, he's one of my favorites. Thanks for offering that little gleam of light this morning.

Quiet Paths said...

Indeed Frost. Thank you so much for sharing this. This is the interim time between open water and open slopes for me.

Lin said...

sombre and sorrow, sounds too down for me, I love the sunny warmth of the desert scene-palm trees and cactus are my style now. lovely poem by frost. Even his name fits...

YourFireAnt said...

Yes. I too love November. It is my second favorite month.

Great post today.


Kathiesbirds said...

Deborah, the photo and the poem are perfect. You almost make me miss the Northeast!

me ann my camera said...

Lovely poem. I like Frost too and often think of him while in the woods on a snowy winter day. My favourite of his is the 'Road not taken. Frost's words prompted me to search through the poems of Bliss Carmen, a favourite poet of mine, and I found his ,'November Sunset'. which I like. Carmen wrote,
"The valley lies in late November now,
Flooded with purple twilight warm as wine."

I find the earth tone grasses and majenta ground foliage of November creates a visual sense of warmth even as the cold winds drives one within to seek shelter.

Poetikat said...

I really need to explore more Frost.
This is a lovely poem. As you know, I'm fond of writing on Autumn myself.

Where's the Bronte piece?


Geraldine said...

What a lovely tribute to Autumn. Thank you for sharing this beautiful timeless treasure of a poem.

mom/caryn said...

I think November is magical!
Somber? yes... at times.
Monochromatic in her color scheme? yes... her shades blend, unlike the jewel tones of fall.
I find it restful.

Robert Frost describes November beautifully. And you did as well... I would like to read some of your poetry describing late Autumn.

Robert V. Sobczak said...

What is it about fall that summons the nostalgic corners of our brains? It's more potent that coffee in its ability to focus our mind down the paths it wanders.

magiceye said...


the 1st pic is wonderful!!

Mary said...

Oh, I love that poem! I think there is something special in those dark and short days -- so moody and beautiful! :)