Monday, 10 November 2014

Monday Moanings - November 10, 2014


The first syllable of the month says it all, but British humourist and poet Thomas Hood (1799 - 1945)
really nailed it.

        No sun—no moon!
        No morn—no noon—
No dawn—
        No sky—no earthly view—
        No distance looking blue—
No road—no street—no “t’other side the way”—
        No end to any Row—
        No indications where the Crescents go—
        No top to any steeple—
No recognitions of familiar people—
        No courtesies for showing ‘em—
        No knowing ‘em!
No traveling at all—no locomotion,
No inkling of the way—no notion—
        “No go”—by land or ocean—
        No mail—no post—
        No news from any foreign coast—
No park—no ring—no afternoon gentility—
        No company—no nobility—
No warmth, no cheerfulness, no healthful ease,
   No comfortable feel in any member—
No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees,
No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds,

A little too much "no" perhaps? Well maybe, but I have to admit that grey sunless skies, leafless /lifeless trees and a damp chill that goes through to my bones, do little more than summon up dismal groans.

To escape the dead weight of such melancholy I trolled the vast expanse of the internet to have a look at how others have wrapped words around this second to last month of the year. Here's some of what I found:

 "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."
-   William Cullen Bryant

"The wild November come at last
 Beneath a veil of rain;
 The night winds blows its folds aside,
 Her face is full of pain.
 The latest of her race, she takes
 The Autumn's vacant throne:
 She has but one short moon to live,
 And she must live alone."
-  Richard Henry Stoddard

 "November comes
 And November goes,
 With the last red berries
 And the first white snows.
 With night coming early,
 And dawn coming late,
 And ice in the bucket
 And frost by the gate.
 The fires burn
 And the kettles sing,
 And earth sinks to rest
 Until next spring."
  - Elizabeth Coatsworth

Take heart, beneath it all, under the frost and brown, behind the damp and grey, Spring is plotting resurrection. And "No" will melt into "Yes."

 ©2014 April Hoeller (except poetry excerpts)

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