Thanksgiving has passed for 2017. Family and friends have departed, and the remains of Turkey Day are fading as preparations are made for that magical time of the year.
Sales and more sales fill the airways, our social media pages, emails, and commercials both visual and print. The latest item is just a swipe of the credit card from becoming our reality. And you do not need to leave your home.
It seems the last days of November have become the hustle and bustle of welcoming December’s shopping frenzy. Before November began, the Yule tide was blooming like May flowers after April rains.
We had a family tradition not to erect the Yule Tree until after Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, times and traditions change like the passing phases of the Moon.
Late Fall was its own special time—hayrides, hot apple cider, pumpkins, caramel apples, etc. Buying Kraft caramels and melting them on the stove or on the hanger pot in the hearth gave that pleasing aroma throughout the house as the apples were dipped and set to harden on the counter.
Let’s not forget the family’s outing to rake the leaves from the myriad trees not only in our yards but those others the winds tend to bring dancing colors and shapes across fences. Wandering leaves disagree with the neighbor in Robert Frost’s Mending Wall who declared, “”Good fences make good neighbours.”
A leaf blown by an Autumn wind does not recognize a fence or any artificial barrier in a neighborhood. For wandering leaves settle where they choose.
Coming back to the leaves’ adventures, the dogs are enjoying jumping in the haystacks of leaves. This delights the children who cry and laugh at their joy and play.
Of course, the cats sit in the bay windows watching the spectacular. They wonder about the sanity of their subjects out there in the blustery day.
If they were not convinced of their superiority before the leaves engagement, they were reassured that their view of themselves was justified. For them Autumn was just a terrible season where the birds which provided much amusement for them had flown elsewhere to spend the next few months.
For those predictable humans riding on back of a wagon being pulled by an infernal machine or a horse, it was lunacy, especially with an Autumn moon. Did they not know that the Moon was affecting their rationality?
The felines had enough of watching out the windows and went to play with their catnip toys. This was their Autumn euphoric—to be drugged by catnip; while humans had their scented candles and apple cider, which were insignificant to the feline cosmic view.
Unfortunately, their revelry was interrupted when the children and dogs returned into their realm boisterously. Even the alluring fragrance of catnip could not counteract dog slobber. Paradise interrupted by drool!
So, whatever you plan for these remaining November days, enjoy them. Spend time with family and if more shopping is in your queue, please remember that childhood memories in the tomorrows will be based on relationships not gadgets which break or grow out of fashion with the passing of time.
Perhaps many wonder why November was limited to 30 days—seems unfair to the last full month of Autumn. Before Winter, Autumn must bid a sad adieu.
This short poem reflects November passing.
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 Jane Coatsworth
G. D. Williams © 2017
Elizabeth Jane Coatsworth (May 31, 1893 – August 31, 1986)
A Maine writer of children’s stories, born on May 31, 1893 in Buffalo, New York. She received a B.A. in 1915 from Vassar College and an M.A. in 1916 from Columbia University. She also attended Radcliffe College and received an honorary degree from the University of Maine (1955).
She authored more than one hundred books. While it is the stories she wrote for children that have gathered the most attention and are best remembered today, she also wrote adult fiction and poetry, as well as memoirs. There is a common thread running through all of Coatsworth’s writing though, and that is the reverence she had for her home state of Maine.
Robert Frost’s Mending Wall