autumn, dVerse Poets Pub Poetics, Elizabeth Drew Stoddard, November, Samuel Longfellow, Sanaa Rizvi, William Cullen Bryant, Writing through life
Image courtesy: Toa Heftiba, Unsplash
Hello, dVerse Poets!
Sanaa here, (aka adashofsunny) to stir your muses. The days have led us to Fall, when the leaves on the cherry trees blush pink or gold; the shortening days mean longer nights and pave the way for introspection.
November. Symbolically it seems to be the representation of the final stage, a culmination of sorts – be it the ongoing year or a chapter in one’s life.
Significance of November in History:
For centuries, this month has played a significant role in shaping the world and ideologies that support it. Here are a few worthy of note:
November 1 ,1848 – The first medical school for women opened in Boston which was founded by Samuel Gregory with just twelve students.
November 3, 1948 – Dewey Defeats Truman banner headline appeared on the front page of the Chicago Tribune newspaper.
November 5 – Remembered as Guy Fawkes Day in Britain, for the anniversary of the failed “Gunpowder Plot” to blow up the Houses of Parliament and King James I in 1605.
November 7, 1885 – Canada’s first transcontinental railway, the Canadian Pacific, was completed in British Columbia.
November 13 – Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) was born in Edinburgh, Scotland. Best known for Treasure Island, Kidnapped, and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
November 17, 1558 – Queen Elizabeth I ascended the throne of England at the age of 25, reigning until 1603 when she was 69.
November 24, 1859 – Charles Darwin’s book On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection was first published, theorizing that all the living creatures descended from a common ancestor.
November 28 – British artist and poet William Blake (1757-1827) was born in London. Best known for Songs of Innocence examining life through the eyes of children and Songs of Experience exploring adult viewpoints of the world.
Image courtesy: Nathan Anderson, Unsplash
I have long loved the feeling that accompanies the arrival of this month and have read a lot of beautiful poems over the years.
by Elizabeth Drew Stoddard
Much have I spoken of the faded leaf;
Long have I listened to the wailing wind,
And watched it ploughing through the heavy clouds;
For autumn charms my melancholy mind.
When autumn comes, the poets sing a dirge:
The year must perish; all the flowers are dead;
The sheaves are gathered; and the mottled quail
Runs in the stubble, but the lark has fled!
Still, autumn ushers in the Christmas cheer,
The holly-berries and the ivy-tree:
They weave a chaplet for the Old Year’s heir;
These waiting mourners do not sing for me!
I find sweet peace in depths of autumn woods,
Where grow the ragged ferns and roughened moss;
The naked, silent trees have taught me this, —
The loss of beauty is not always loss!
‘November’ by Elizabeth Drew Barstow Stoddard describes the emotions a speaker feels in regards to the coming of autumn.
She refers to the wailing wind, the dying of flowers and shares with the reader that even though the month signals the end of the year, she has learned to love the change that comes with it.
by Samuel Longfellow
Summer is gone; but summer days return;
The winds and frosts have stripped the woodlands bare,
Save for some clinging foliage here and there;
Then as if, pitiful, her heart did yearn,
Nature, the loving mother, lifts her urn
And pours the stream of life to her spent child:
The desert air grows strangely soft and mild,
And in his veins the long-fled ardors burn.
So, when we pass the mid-years of our lives,
And, sad or glad, we feel our work nigh done,
There come to us with sudden, swift returns,
The glow, the thrill, which show that youth survives,
That—though through softening mists—still shines the sun;
And in our souls the Indian summer burns.
As a private man, Longfellow did not often add autobiographical elements to his poetry. Much of his work is recognized for its melodious musicality. I am in awe of his style as he seeks to describe November as a “spent child,” and am reminded yet again of the year’s end and supposedly the hard work attached to it.
by William Cullen Bryant
Yet one smile more, departing, distant sun!
One mellow smile through the soft vapory air,
Ere, o’er the frozen earth, the loud winds run,
Or snows are sifted o’er the meadows bare.
One smile on the brown hills and naked trees,
And the dark rocks whose summer wreaths are cast,
And the blue gentian flower, that, in the breeze,
Nods lonely, of her beauteous race the last.
Yet a few sunny days, in which the bee
Shall murmur by the hedge that skirts the way,
The cricket chirp upon the russet lea,
And man delight to linger in thy ray.
Yet one rich smile, and we will try to bear
The piercing winter frost, and winds, and darkened air.
In the poem “November,” Bryant expresses perhaps what most of us feel at this time of the year. It is the idea that of trying to get that last bit of Fall out of nature and trying to put off the inevitable portrayal of Winter’s fierce grip on the Earth.
So, what do these poets have in common? From what I gather it is fervent breath that seeks to make its way through the despair and gloom. And isn’t that exactly what we need in times like these?
Sources: The History Palace, November
For today’s Poetics, I would like you to write a poem about November and tell us what it means to you. I aim for this prompt to be wide in scope. You can discuss what this month reminds you of, political or non-political. It can be a seasonal poem if you like. You can also use a painting for inspiration or perhaps a song. There are so many! As long as you stick to the parameters of the prompt, you are fine.
New to dVerse? Here’s how to join in:
*Write a poem (in any form) in response to the challenge.
*You will find links to other poets and more will join, so check back later to read their poems.
*Read and comment on other poets’ work–we all come here to have our poems read.
*Please link back to dVerse from your site/blog.
Welcome to Poetics, everyone! 🙂 On the menu, we have butternut squash, bacon and cheese crostini with jack and coke, pickled fish and crackers with mulled wine or if you prefer we also have sweetheart raspberry cinnamon rolls with tea and/or coffee of your choice. 💝
Björn Rudberg (brudberg) said:
I will take the cinnamon rolls and tea please
Cinnamon rolls and tea coming right up! 🙂 Heading over to read you 💝
D. Avery @shiftnshake said:
What a menu! A dark beer if you please with the crostini. Perfect for the November evening.
Dark beer with butternut squash, bacon and cheese crostini 🙂 coming right up! Good to see you, D. Avery 💝
Thanks for hosting Sanaa. Wow, we have a delicious spread to perk up a dreary November sky in Ontario. I will have those delicious crackers with mulled wine.
See you at the poetry trail.
Thank you so much, Grace 😀 it is a cold but lovely evening here in Karachi. Crackers and mulled wine coming right up 💝
Björn Rudberg (brudberg) said:
Oh… November… I think I have already written about how dark it is so many times so I felt I had to do something else.
We had our first frost in November 1 and the sunset is already at 5pm; so it gets really dark quickly.
Björn Rudberg (brudberg) said:
Sunset is 4 PM now… we had some frosts a few weeks ago but now it’s been warm windy and rainy
Good evening poets, and thank you Sanaa for hosting with a November theme. By coincidence, we had butternut squash in our evening meal! The sweetheart raspberry cinnamon rolls look delicious – and may I have a decaf coffee, please? 🙂
Good to see you, Kim 😀 yes ofcourse .. sweetheart raspberry cinnamon rolls with decaf coffee coming right up 💝
You’re most welcome! 💝
Hi, Sanaa, Björn, and all! I’ll have one of those raspberry cinnamon rolls and a coffee. 😀
Sweetheart raspberry cinnamon rolls with coffee coming right up 😀 Heading over to read you, Jenna 💝
Hello Sanaa and All. What a wonderful smorgasbord in both word and consumables! So many directions to take the prompt. A raspberry cinnamon roll with hot rooibos and a shot of O’Mara’s would be perfect please 🙂 It’s sunny here today with only a light jacket needed. A walk out back shows another big tree fell. One path is blocked, but thankfully other paths are still open. Happy Tuesday and keep your prayers going for a good outcome in the US election.
Raspberry cinnamon roll with hot rooibos and a shot of O’Mara’s coming right up! 😀 Good to see you 💝
Many thanks, Sanaa. Cheers!
Linda Lee Lyberg said:
Hello everyone- Thanks for hosting Sanaa. A lovely wide open prompt. I’ll have to ponder on this, and post later. I have a doctor’s appointment this afternoon and will be out of pocket. Have a great one!
Hope the doctor’s appointment goes well, Linda 💝 See you later on the trail 🙂
Laura Bloomsbury said:
Thank you for not making this one too difficult Sanaa though it’s never easy putting the Muse to the writing challenge. I made a bit of a smorgasbord of the poem anyway – thank you for hosting too with food and drink to boot – I love my cuppa!
Thank you so much, Laura 🙂 I figured it’s best to keep it simple since it’s election day 💝 Here’s your cuppa! xo
GRRRRR…..I am having trouble with the link to my poem. I’ll play around with it. Hope I can fix it and get it posted!
Well I had to change the title three times, trash each one and FINALLY one worked! APOLOGIES to my readers who are going to get three announcements about a new poem and each time it will go to an “OOPS that page doesn’t exist.” Total frustration. BUT now it’s up and on Mr. Linky.
So now I will get a cup of tea and relax. Enough with the stress. I need to go back and read some of the Happiness Project poems 🙂
No worries, Lillian 🙂 I am glad you were able to sort it out 💝 Heading over to read you!
Great prompt Sanaa … lest we forget!
Thank you so much, Kate 🙂 heading over to read you! 💝
Thank you, Sanaa, for a prompt that pushed me into an uncharacteristically optimistic place.
My pleasure, Xan 🙂 heading over to read you 💝
well its been a while…..great to see that Dverse is still going strong! look forward to reading!!
Thank you so much! Happy to have you onboard 💝💝
Hello Stu! Always great to see a poet from way back when. The pub doors are always open.
Perfect prompt Sanaa. I tried, but I got nuthin’ — too damned distracted by this, the most important election day, in this, the November of my 74th year. I wish all my fellow poets, “good writing”! To my fellow US citizens I say, “DUMP TRUMP”! If things go correctly today, I’ll likely try again to rouse my muse tomorrow? If things go to shit today, you may not hear from us for a while?
Fingers crossed for the outcome of the election, Rob 🙂
Rob, fingers, toes, and everything else crossed that it is so.
Beverly Crawford said:
Still sweating out the electiion. He’s going to make it as dreadful as possible. A pox on him!! By the way, I cannot access your blog. It’s giving me a weird WordPress message, but I’m having no trouble with all the other WP people, so it must be some sort of setting on yours. Is anyone else having trouble?
I hear you on the election. It’s about as close as close can be right now. You are the first I’ve heard from that my blog is blocked. Have you cleared your cache lately? Not sure if that’s the right tech term but someone told me to do that before when I was having similar troubles and it worked.
Thanks for hosting, Sanaa! I wrote a November poem earlier today, but it didn’t quite fit this prompt, and then I got distracted with stress cooking and baking. 😀. But cinnamon buns–yes, please!
Sweetheart raspberry cinnamon rolls coming right up! 💝💝
I will gladly have the bacon and cheese crostini, and a coke no ice please. Never had the dish before, but it sounds like something I must try.
I loved the prompt today and it eased the election jitters. Writing relaxes me and I love seeing the end result of my work, if I am satisfied with it or not. I’ve been enjoying the poems everyone as well, can’t wait to read more of them later.
Also, no matter what happens tonight, we still have our wonderful dVerse community at least. 🙂
Butternut squash, bacon and cheese crostini with coke 🙂 no ice coming right up! Thank you, Lucy 💝 I designed this prompt keeping in mind the jitters going around because it’s election day. I am glad you liked it! 😀
Beverly Crawford said:
I apologize for my rather strange double-entry. I wrestled with Blogger for the better part of an hour. It persisted in putting EVERYTHING in one paragraph, and would not allow me to alter it. Now I’m anticipating a long night as election returns are reported, and so hoping we will be able to say goodbye to Trump.
No apologies necessary, Bev! 💝 It happens to the best of us. Here’s hoping the outcome of the election is good and hassle free. 🤞
Tricia Sankey said:
I’m a little late, but I do have a November poem I’m a gonna post here in a second. 🙂
Loved your poem, Tricia! 💝 It’s Wednesday morning here .. and yours was the first one I read while playing catch up. 🙂
Thomas Hood’s poem is bleak but echoes many people’s feeling for this month
It is an exceptionally powerful poem 🙂 and yes, I believe you are right 💝
Many thanks Sanaa, what a fest of poems you placed before us and a wonderful invitation to look at November
You’re most welcome, Paul! 💝 Absolutely loved your poem 🙂