November’s Finale


Here we are, Thanksgiving week. We’ve somehow managed to live with Covid for nine months now–I don’t think even my pregnancies seemed that long. But, November has been so lovely, in that November kind of way. After October’s unwelcome snow storm, the days have been above freezing, sometimes raining, sometimes blustery, sometimes foggy, and I swear, it’s a rare 4:00 in the afternoon that it does not look like this in my living room. The sun, so low in the sky, floods the house and I cannot do a thing except sit in the chair with a kitty on my lap, and soak in the beautiful light. We took an afternoon walk in the woods at Wayfayer’s Park yesterday, and it was like one of those late autumn afternoon walks you read about in a British novel, after they’ve had their Sunday roast, when the rust-gold air is scented by woodsmoke, and the path is spongy with decaying leaves and needles, and it smells just like my favorite oak and cedar scented candle. It’s so lovely to return home as the sun is setting, start the fire, pour yourself a pint. I love November.

It’s lightly snowing this morning, coming gently straight down. It won’t amount to much with 34 degree temperatures, but it’s a harbinger of winter which arrives now in less than a month. I’ll miss November’s gentleness and its melancholy and its nostalgia. The light is so bright white in winter, and is there any smell other than that flinty one of cold? I know I’ll see her beauty–even now, it is pleasantly still and quiet as I watch big flakes drift down to earth out my window. But, November, I am reluctant to bid you farewell.

Reluctance, by Robert Frost

Out through the fields and the woods
   And over the walls I have wended;
I have climbed the hills of view
   And looked at the world, and descended;
I have come by the highway home,
   And lo, it is ended.

The leaves are all dead on the ground,
   Save those that the oak is keeping
To ravel them one by one
   And let them go scraping and creeping
Out over the crusted snow,
   When others are sleeping.

And the dead leaves lie huddled and still,
   No longer blown hither and thither;
The last lone aster is gone;
   The flowers of the witch hazel wither;
The heart is still aching to seek,
   But the feet question ‘Whither?’

Ah, when to the heart of man
   Was it ever less than a treason
To go with the drift of things,
   To yield with a grace to reason,
And bow and accept the end
   Of a love or a season?

1 thought on “November’s Finale

  1. Mary Barry

    The light is so beautiful. I think I am feeling hope. I love that park ….reminds me of our day there this summer on the beach with our stand up paddle boards!


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