Poetry Sunday: November by Elizabeth Stoddard

We say goodbye to November this week, the month that is home to my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving. The old year is fading fast. It's all downhill from here.

Actually, I like this time of year, the last few weeks before the calendar moves on. "Autumn charms my melancholy mind," as Elizabeth Stoddard expresses it in her poem. And as I look around at the silent trees, I am reminded that "the loss of beauty is not always loss."


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!


  1. "I find sweet peace in depths of autumn woods" - that about describes me to the tee!

  2. There is beauty in the bare tree, in the brown rushes glistening in the low sun, in our Northern Cardinal males so red against a grey sky.

    1. Perhaps one of the reasons cardinals are such beloved birds is the fact that they provide that slash of brilliant color against the gray.

  3. I like this poet. Time flies fast, I feel like I just woke up in January, and now it's almost the end of 2022. Honestly, I don't want time to go fast because things might also change that fast. All we can do is cherish every moment we have with our loved ones.

    1. Time speeds up as one gets older. By now, the years seem to go by me in a flash.

  4. I really love that last stanza! What a great poem for the end of November. I can't believe how fast the year is going by either.

  5. "The loss of beauty is not always loss!" Yes.


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