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November Poems

Table of Contents

  1. November by Charles L. Cleaveland
  2. November by Elizabeth Stoddard
  3. November by Emily Dickinson
  4. November by John Clare
  5. November Night by Adelaide Crapsey
  6. November Twilight by Bliss Carman
  7. November by Ruby Archer
  8. November by William Cullen Bryant
  9. November by Paul Hamilton Hayne
  10. On the Beach in November by Edward Cracroft LeFroy
  11. November by Rebecca Hey
  12. November by Esther M. Clark
  13. November Rain by Ellen P. Allerton
  14. November by Alice Cary
  15. A November Day by Mary B. C. Slade
  16. November by Samuel Longfellow
  17. November by Emma Shuman
  18. November by Annette Wynne
  19. November by E. C.
  20. November by William Wallace Maxim
  21. What the Birds Teach Us by J. R. Eastwood
  22. November by Nannie R. Glass
  23. November by Carl Holliday
  24. November by Maurice Thompson
  25. Nutting Song by Paul Laurence Dunbar

  1. November

    Autumn in America
    by Jasper Francis Crospey
    by Charles L. Cleaveland

    When thistle-blows do lightly float
    About the pasture-height,
    And shrills the hawk a parting note,
    And creeps the frost at night,
    Then hilly ho! though singing so,
    And whistle as I may,
    There comes again the old heart pain
    Through all the livelong day.

    In high wind creaks the leafless tree
    And nods the fading fern;
    The knolls are dun as snow-clouds be,
    And cold the sun does burn.
    Then ho, hollo! though calling so,
    I can not keep it down;
    The tears arise unto my eyes,
    And thoughts are chill and brown.

    Far in the cedars' dusky stoles,
    Where the sere ground-vine weaves,
    The partridge drums funereal rolls
    Above the fallen leaves.
    And hip, hip, ho! though cheering so,
    It stills no whit the pain;
    For drip, drip, drip, from bare branchtip,
    I hear the year's last rain.

    So drive the cold cows from the hill,
    And call the wet sheep in;
    And let their stamping clatter fill
    The barn with warming din.
    And ho, folk, ho! though it is so
    That we no more may roam,
    We still will find a cheerful mind
    Around the fire at home!

  2. November

    The naked, silent trees have taught me this,—
    The loss of beauty is not always loss!

    – Elizabeth Stoddard
    by Elizabeth 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!

  3. November

    by Emily Dickinson

    Besides the autumn poets sing,
    A few prosaic days
    A little this side of the snow
    And that side of the haze.

    A few incisive mornings,
    A few ascetic eyes, —
    Gone Mr. Bryant's golden-rod,
    And Mr. Thomson's sheaves.

    Still is the bustle in the brook,
    Sealed are the spicy valves;
    Mesmeric fingers softly touch
    The eyes of many elves.

    Perhaps a squirrel may remain,
    My sentiments to share.
    Grant me, O Lord, a sunny mind,
    Thy windy will to bear!

  4. November

    by John Clare

    Sybil of months, and worshipper of winds,
    I love thee, rude and boisterous as thou art;
    And scraps of joy my wandering ever finds
    Mid thy uproarious madness—when the start
    Of sudden tempests stirs the forest leaves
    Into hoarse fury, till the shower set free
    Stills the huge swells. Then ebb the mighty heaves,
    That sway the forest like a troubled sea.
    I love thy wizard noise, and rave in turn
    Half-vacant thoughts and rhymes of careless form;
    Then hide me from the shower, a short sojourn,
    Neath ivied oak; and mutter to the storm,
    Wishing its melody belonged to me,
    That I might breathe a living song to thee.

  5. November Night

    by Adelaide Crapsey

    With faint dry sound,
    Like steps of passing ghosts,
    The leaves, frost-crisp'd, break from the trees
    And fall.

  6. November Twilight

    by Bliss Carman

    Now Winter at the end of day
    Along the ridges takes her way,

    Upon her twilight round to light
    The faithful candles of the night.

    As quiet as the nun she goes
    With silver lamp in hand, to close

    The silent doors of dusk that keep
    The hours of memory and sleep.

    She pauses to tread out the fires
    Where Autumn's festal train retires.

    The last red embers smoulder down
    Behind the steeples of the town.

    Austere and fine the trees stand bare
    And moveless in the frosty air,

    Against the pure and paling light
    Before the threshold of the night.

    On purple valley and dim wood
    The timeless hush of solitude

    Is laid, as if the time for some
    Transcending mystery were come,

    That shall illumine and console
    The penitent and eager soul,

    Setting her free to stand before
    Supernal beauty and adore.

    Dear Heart, in heaven's high portico
    It is the hour of prayer. And lo,

    Above the earth, serene and still,
    One star —our star —o'er Lonetree Hill!

  7. November

    by Ruby Archer

    Our twilight month November is,
    The evening of the year.
    The brilliant summer noontide left
    A pallor soft and clear.

    Dame Winter brings with quiet grace
    Her curtains all of snow,
    And pins them deftly into place
    With boughs of mistletoe.

  8. November

    by William Cullen Bryant

    Yet one smile more, departing, distant sun!
    One mellow smile through the soft vapoury air,
    Ere, o'er the frozen earth, the loud winds ran,
    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 skim 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.

  9. November

    by Paul Hamilton Hayne

    Within the deep-blue eyes of Heaven a haze
    Of saddened passion dims their tender light,
    For that her fair queen-child the Summer bright,
    Lies a wan corse amidst her mouldering bays:
    The sullen Autumn lifts no voice of praise
    To herald Winter's cold and cruel might,
    But winds foreboding fill the desolate night,
    And die at dawning down wild woodland ways:
    The sovereign sun at noonday smileth cold,
    As through a shroud he hath no power to part,
    While huddled flocks crouch listless round their fold;
    The mock-bird's dumb, no more with cheerful dart:
    Upsoars the lark through morning's quivering gold,
    And dumb or dead, methinks, great Nature's heart!

  10. On the Beach in November

    by Edward Cracroft LeFroy

    My heart's Ideal, that somewhere out of sight
    Art beautiful and gracious and alone,—
    Haply, where blue Saronic waves are blown
    On shores that keep some touch of old delight,—
    How welcome is thy memory, and how bright,
    To one who watches over leagues of stone
    These chilly northern waters creep and moan
    From weary morning unto weary night.
    O Shade-form, lovelier than the living crowd,
    So kind to votaries, yet thyself unvowed,
    So free to human fancies, fancy-free,
    My vagrant thought goes out to thee, to thee,
    As wandering lonelier than the Poet's cloud,
    I listen to the wash of this dull sea.

  11. November

    by Rebecca Hey

    Who has not felt upon a Summer's day,
    When Nature trick'd herself in all her bloom,
    That this fair world did seem too blest a home
    For man, sin's willing slave, death's lawful prey?
    It was a summer thought, and pass'd away
    When bright things fled: now, by November's gloom
    Unparadised, Earth seems to share his doom,
    And his sad lapse reflect in her decay.
    All life seems dead! Methinks, the very blast
    Lacks the redeeming grandeur, the wild sweep,
    Of Winter's ruthless tempest, which lays waste
    The hoary forest, and doth rouse from sleep
    Nature's mute energies, till earth, sea, sky,
    Yield to its challenge fierce, as fierce reply.

  12. November

    by Esther M. Clark

    Summer was made for the wandering heart,
    The changing beauty and wonderment
    In the long, gray stretches of open road
    With only the sky for a wayside tent.
    Meadowlarks singing beyond the hedge,
    Grass with the shimmer of dew still wet;
    A noon day rest by the water's edge
    Summer was marvelous sweet; and yet:

    November days and a bright wood fire;
    A hearth and a home and the Heart's Desire.

    Summer was kind to the wayfaring one,
    Luring and beckoning, on and on,
    Through new and untraveled, unweary ways
    From dawn till night and from night till dawn.
    Orchard and field in a veil of rain,
    Blossoming beauty on every bough;
    What more could the heart of a man contain?
    Summer was wondrously kind; but now:

    November nights and the open fire;
    A hearth and a home and the Heart's Desire.

  13. November Rain

    by Ellen P. Allerton

    November rain! November rain!
    Fitfully beating the window pane:
    Creeping in pools across the street;
    Clinging in slush to dainty feet;
    Shrouding in black the sun at noon;
    Wrapping a pall about the moon.

    Out in the darkness, sobbing, sighing,
    Yonder, where the dead are lying,
    Over mounds with headstones gray,
    And new ones made but yesterday—
    Weeps the rain above the mould,
    Weeps the night-rain, sad and cold.

    The low wind wails—a voice of pain.
    Fit to chime with the weeping rain.
    Dirge-like, solemn, it sinks and swells,
    Till I start and listen for tolling bells,
    And let them toll—the summer fled,
    Wild winds and rain bewail the dead.

    And yet not dead. A prophesy
    Over wintry wastes comes down to me,
    Strong, exultant, floating down
    Over frozen fields and forests brown,
    Clear and sweet it peals and swells,
    Like New Year chimes from midnight bells.

    It tells of a heart with life aglow,
    Throbbing under the shrouding snow,
    Beating, beating with pulses warm,
    While roars above it the gusty storm.
    Asleep—not dead—your grief is vain,
    Wild, wailing winds, November rain.

  14. November

    by Alice Cary

    The leaves are fading and falling,
    The winds are rough and wild,
    The birds have ceased their calling,
    But let me tell, you my child,

    Though day by day, as it closes,
    Doth darker and colder grow,
    The roots of the bright red roses
    Will keep alive in the snow.

    And when the Winter is over,
    The boughs will get new leaves,
    The quail come back to the clover,
    And the swallow back to the eaves.

    The robin will wear on his bosom
    A vest that is bright and new,
    And the loveliest way-side blossom
    Will shine with the sun and dew.

    The leaves to-day are whirling,
    The brooks are all dry and dumb,
    But let me tell, you my darling,
    The Spring will be sure to come.

    There must be rough, cold weather,
    And winds and rains so wild;
    Not all good things together
    Come to us here, my child.

    So, when some dear joy loses
    Its beauteous summer glow,
    Think how the roots of the roses
    Are kept alive in the snow.

  15. A November Day

    by Mary B. C. Slade

    I come, a sad November day,
    Gray clad from foot to head;
    A few late leaves of yellow birch,
    A few of maple red.

    And, should you look, you might descry
    Some wee ferns, hiding low,
    Or late Fall dandelions shy,
    Where cold winds cannot blow.

    And then, you see, I'm not all gray;
    A little golden light
    Shines on a sad November day,
    A promise for the night.

    For though gray-clad, in soft gray mist,
    Floating on gray-cloud wing,
    I know that I the way prepare
    For brightest days of Spring.

    And though witch-hazel's golden flowers
    Are all the blooms I know,
    They promise—so do I—the hours
    When sweetest Mayflowers grow.

  16. November

    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.

  17. November

    by Emma Shuman

    November, gloomy eyed and sullen browed,
    With sweeping garment of a misty hue,
    Comes gliding with slow step across the land,
    And straightway at her feet rise moaning winds,
    That sing a requiem for the summer, dead
    And buried deep beneath the autumn leaves.

    Anon the giant trees take up the strain,
    With louder voice and naked arms wide tossed,
    Do groan and sigh in helpless agony
    At touch of her prophetic hand,
    Which creeping slowly up and ever up,
    Doth sap their very vitals and enwrap
    Them fast in winter’s death.

    The little brook that lately kissed the bank
    Through sunny hours and glints of leafy shade,
    Babbling the while unto the listening ferns,
    That ever bent their graceful heads
    To answer his caress,
    Now silent slips away as one who hears a foe behind,
    Bearing upon his bosom brown and sere
    The lifeless forms of those he lately loved.
    Adown the glen the summer winds rush with discordant sigh,
    While all the tiny folk that habit in the wood
    Seek low their shelter.
    Stealthily she passed as one who but obeys a stronger power,
    Yet is the deed most hateful in her sight,
    Then from her mantle’s many folds
    There fell a pearl like mist that straightway wrought
    A magic in its touch on all below,
    Changing the brown to gray, the brilliant red to brown,
    Clothing the bare boughs in their winding sheet,
    And decking every blade and stem,
    In vestment white for burial.

    A pause, in which all nature stands aghast,
    While heavy bends the sky its weeping clouds
    In sorrow at the sight;
    Another, and the topmost branches bow
    Their allegiance to the Icy King,
    Who swiftly riding in his windy clouds,
    Doth warn of his approach.
    A moment more and the fierce northern steeds
    Are hard upon the scene,
    While thick and fast the snowy pall is laid
    On all the land.

    Why muse in sadness on this swift decay?
    ’Tis but the death of nature that must come
    To aid the spring of life perennial;
    Without which no life is, nor can exist,
    And through which comes the perfect life above,
    For which we sleep as sleep these flowers
    Beneath the winter’s snow,
    To bloom the brighter when the Maker’s hand
    Quickens the germs of immortality
    And bids us spring as they will spring,
    Beauteous and free from every touch of earth,
    Through this long sleep.

  18. November

    by Annette Wynne

    No matter how hard you try,
    Old crying wind, you cannot make us cry,
    You make the poor leaves sorry—very,
    But we shall keep on being merry;
    It's good it's true
    Not all the months behave like you,
    Blowing mean, and blowing cold,
    Hurting ragged folks and old,
    As if you never would be through;
    But never mind,
    Right near the end we'll find
    A time for all to laugh and play;
    You may be all the month unkind
    But after all, you bring Thanksgiving Day
    And that makes us glad—
    And so, cold old month, you're not so bad!

  19. November

    by E. C.

    I would forget so many things;
    The moaning wind, and rain,
    Uncanny sounds of ghostly hands
    At door and window pane.

    I would forget the perished leaves
    And grass, dismantled trees—
    Old loves and hopes, the youth of me
    That passed away with these.

    But when I see November come,
    How shall I then forget;
    The other years return with her—
    Remembrance and regret.

  20. November

    by William Wallace Maxim

    The low dull, hollow sound within the forest,
    The leafy tree that seems to stand aghast
    Beside the ghostly lines of flickering shadow,
    Proclaim the summer gone, the harvest past.

    The rustling reeds that erst gave up their juices
    To sighing winds, are standing stark and gray;
    Health breezes blow among the pines and spruces,
    And down the rocky leaf-strewn gorges play.

  21. What the Birds Teach Us

    by J. R. Eastwood

    November now is here,
    With skies of leaden hue,
    And gloomy days and drear,
    And winds that pierce us through.

    And on the hedge the rose,
    With leaves of tender green,
    No more in beauty grows,
    And frost and snow are seen.

    But still the Birds contrive,
    By hardship unsubdued,
    To keep themselves alive,
    And keenly seek their food.

    And thus they teach us still,
    However dark the day,
    "That where there is a Will
    There always is a Way."

  22. November

    by Nannie R. Glass

    November is so drear and chill
    Whilst making leafless branch and tree,
    Whilst sweeping over vale and hill
    With all her doleful minstrelsy.
    November wails the summer's death
    In such a melancholy voice,
    She has a withering, blighting breath;
    She does not bid the heart rejoice.

    Yet why repine, thou stricken one?
    Grief is the common fate of all.
    This the refrain beneath the sun:
    Mortals must die, and leaves must fall.
    They'll live again, the leaves and flowers,
    When spring returns to bless the earth;
    They'll waken 'neath her sunny hours
    Through nature's touch to beauteous birth.

    Hope in decay and do not moan
    That God has taken one we love;
    Why should our hearts be turned to stone
    When he is safe in heaven above?
    Redeemed through Christ, who was his trust,
    With him in realms of joy on high;
    For though down here "'tis dust to dust,"
    The Christian lives beyond the sky.

    Then in the autumn's woe rejoice,—
    Rejoice in calm, rejoice in storm;
    In either hear God's tender voice,
    For both his holy will perform.

  23. November

    Carl Holliday

    A gray-brown field and a misty hill,
    A deepening shadow in every rill,
    A calm, and, lo, from all around
    A strange, far sound.

    A gathering-in of the fruit of hand,
    A sighing for rest in the weary land,
    A haze of smoke, and the leaves' dry heap
    For things that sleep.

    A psalm to God and a prayer that He
    The guardian of our harvest be,
    That we may midst the winter's roar
    Find joy in store.

  24. November

    Maurice Thompson

    A hint of slumber in the wind,
    A dreamful stir of blades and stalks,
    As tenderly the twilight flows
    Down all my garden walks.

    My robes of work are thrown aside,
    The odor of the grass is sweet;
    The pleasure of a day well spent
    Bathes me from head to feet.

    Calmly I wait the dreary change,—
    The season cutting sharp and sheer
    Through the wan bowers of death that fringe
    The border of the year.

    And while I muse, the fated earth
    Into a colder current dips,—
    Feels winter's scourge, with summer's kiss
    Still warm upon her lips.

  25. Nutting Song

    by Paul Laurence Dunbar

    The November sun invites me,
    And although the chill wind smites me,
    I will wander to the woodland
    Where the laden trees await;
    And with loud and joyful singing
    I will set the forest ringing,
    As if I were king of Autumn,
    And Dame Nature were my mate,—

    While the squirrel in his gambols
    Fearless round about me ambles,
    As if he were bent on showing
    In my kingdom he’d a share;
    While my warm blood leaps and dashes,
    And my eye with freedom flashes,
    As my soul drinks deep and deeper
    Of the magic in the air.

    There’s a pleasure found in nutting,
    All life’s cares and griefs outshutting,
    That is fuller far and better
    Than what prouder sports impart.
    Who could help a carol trilling
    As he sees the baskets filling?
    Why, the flow of song keeps running
    O’er the high walls of the heart.

    So when I am home returning,
    When the sun is lowly burning,
    I will once more wake the echoes
    With a happy song of praise,—
    For the golden sunlight blessing,
    And the breezes’ soft caressing,
    And the precious boon of living
    In the sweet November days.

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