Fall & Winter Verse

It seems like a poetry kind of day.

Poetry. Thoughts that travel from the head through the heart and out through the fingers to become words on paper.

God’s Grandeur
By Gerard Manley Hopkins

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
And wears man’s smudge and shares man’s smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.

And for all this, nature is never spent;
There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
And though the last lights off the black West went
Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs —
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.

The Road Not Taken
By Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Song for Autumn
By Mary Oliver

Don’t you imagine the leaves dream now
how comfortable it will be to touch
the earth instead of the
nothingness of the air and the endless
freshets of wind? And don’t you think
the trees, especially those with
mossy hollows, are beginning to look for

the birds that will come—six, a dozen—to sleep
inside their bodies? And don’t you hear
the goldenrod whispering goodbye,
the everlasting being crowned with the first
tuffets of snow? The pond
stiffens and the white field over which
the fox runs so quickly brings out
its long blue shadows. The wind wags
its many tails. And in the evening
the piled firewood shifts a little,
longing to be on its way.

Leaves
by Elsie N. Brady

How silently they tumble down
And come to rest upon the ground
To lay a carpet, rich and rare,
Beneath the trees without a care,
Content to sleep, their work well done,
Colors gleaming in the sun.

At other times, they wildly fly
Until they nearly reach the sky.
Twisting, turning through the air
Till all the trees stand stark and bare.
Exhausted, drop to earth below
To wait, like children, for the snow.

Theme in Yellow
By Carl Sandburg

I spot the hills
With yellow balls in autumn.
I light the prairie cornfields
Orange and tawny gold clusters
And I am called pumpkins.
On the last of October
When dusk is fallen
Children join hands
And circle round me
Singing ghost songs
And love to the harvest moon;
I am a jack-o’-lantern
With terrible teeth
And the children know
I am fooling.

 This one was written by my mother.  It’s not a masterpiece but, because it is part of my history, it means a lot to me.

My maternal Grandma Ellen and my cousin Tom. Grandma died in 1940, nearly seven years before I was born.

Days On The Farm

The garden is dying, all weedy and brown
Dotted with pumpkins and squash on the ground.
The birds on the wind are honking goodbye;
I watch them in silence and heave a big sigh,
To mourn for the passing of summer’s last cry.
God gave us this beauty, for soon we will know
The grimness of winter and new fallen snow.

God, please give us one more time
To see things grow,
To be on the farm
That we all love so.

Let loved ones come
Both young and old
Just one more time
Before it is sold.

My mom, Aunt Anna, Uncle Ross and his wife Helen, Aunt Verna, Aunt Sarah, my daughter and her cousin. This was about 1972.

Just one more season
Of early morns
When bird songs
Herald a new day born.

Walking the pathways
Thinking our thoughts
Praising the Lord
For all He has wrought.

Young people laughing
Under the tree
Bout what we can’t share,
Contented and free.

My daughter with her cousin on the old family homestead. You can see the windmill behind them, and an old bus that they used as a clubhouse.

Raspberry picking
Strawberries too,
Hot in the sun
For our young and old crew.

Home to the kitchen
For lunch and a drink
It is good to be home
And just sit and think.

Busy in the kitchen
Cooking a meal;
Stuff from the garden,
And baking with zeal.

O God, in your mercy
Let us once more
Walk that dear earth
As we’ve done before.

The world is a clamor
A noise and a shout,
But here it is quiet,
Your world all about.

We thank you our Father
For your tender care.
For giving the strength
To work, aches to bear.

One day at a time
So special and dear
We count every hour
They are precious this year.

dividerbittersweet

Written in the fall of 1979, the year my Aunt Anna died. My mother, daughter, aunt, and cousin stayed with her at the family farm every summer for several years. This is where my mother and her siblings were born, where her father worked the land.

They had one more year, then the farm was sold, and all of my Aunt Anna’s things too. My mother and Aunt Verna went out and locked the door; it was a sad year.

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8 Responses to Fall & Winter Verse

  1. weather257 says:

    Bittersweet is truly the word…our best times cannot last forever, except in our minds and hearts. It was good your mom captured that feeling in words!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. weather257 says:

    I always think of these lyrics this time of year, when the geese and sandhill cranes chatter overhead as they pass by:

    Urge For Going
    by Joni Mitchell

    I awoke today and found
    the frost perched on the town
    It hovered in a frozen sky
    then it gobbled summer down
    When the sun turns traitor cold
    and all the trees are shivering in a naked row…

    I get the urge for going
    But I never seem to go

    I get the urge for going
    When the meadow grass is turning brown
    And summertime is falling down and winter is closing in

    I had a man in summertime
    He had summer-colored skin
    And not another girl in town
    My darling’s heart could win
    But when the leaves fell on the ground
    And bully winds came around
    and pushed them face down in the snow…
    He got the urge for going
    And I had to let him go

    He got the urge for going
    When the meadow grass was turning brown
    And summertime was falling down and winter was closing in

    Now the warriors of winter give a cold triumphant shout
    And all that stays is dying all that lives is gettin’ out
    See the geese in chevron flight
    Flapping and racing on before the snow…
    They’ve got the urge for going
    And they’ve got the wings to go

    They get the urge for going
    When the meadow grass is turning brown
    And summertime is falling down and winter is closing in

    I’ll ply the fire with kindling now
    I’ll pull the blankets up to my chin
    I’ll lock the vagrant winter out
    And I’ll bolt my wandering in
    I’d like to call back summertime
    And have her stay for just another month or so…
    But she’s got the urge for going
    So I guess she’ll have to go

    She gets the urge for going
    When the meadow grass is turning brown
    And all her empire’s falling down
    And winter’s closing in.

    And I get the urge for going
    When the meadow grass is turning brown
    And summertime is Falling Down.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. weather257 says:

    One more for Fall & Winter, by TOMMY JONES ~

    Try to remember the kind of September
    when life was slow and oh, so mellow.
    Try to remember the kind of September
    when grass was green and grain was yellow.
    Try to remember the kind of September
    when you were a young and callow fellow,
    Try to remember and if you remember then follow.

    Try to remember when life was so tender
    that no one wept except the willow.
    Try to remember when life was so tender that
    dreams were kept beside your pillow.
    Try to remember when life was so tender that
    love was an ember about to billow.
    Try to remember and if you remember then follow.

    Deep in December it’s nice to remember
    altho you know the snow will follow.
    Deep in December it’s nice to remember
    without the hurt the heart is hollow.
    Deep in December it’s nice to remember
    the fire of September that made us mellow.
    Deep in December our hearts should remember and follow

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Menagerie says:

    One of the wonderful surprises I’ve had homeschooling my grandson is that he loves poetry, and is able to memorize short verses pretty easily. We recite them several times a week, and he retains them well.

    This one is part of a poem attributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson incorrectly, but the authorship is unclear.

    For this new morning with its light,
    Father, we thank Thee.
    For rest and shelter of the night,
    Father, we thank Thee
    For health and food, for love and friends,
    For everything Thy goodness sends,
    Father in heaven, we thank Thee.

    Through my grandson, I’m getting lessons in art and poetry again.

    Liked by 3 people

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