A poem about the trouble with November

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The trouble with November

They say You do have a lot of heart
which can be a dismissal, a manner
of saying Cede the floor, code for
Take a seat. The ground has hardened
so. Is it like that now?
I mourn the leaving
light, write letters to keep
out the chill: Dear friend, this time
of year we stop going down to the water.
We turn away from mountains,
let them alone with somber thoughts. Who am I in all this
to still feel love so abundant? A tree
on my lawn catches the morning sun.
It sits in bare branches like
a bright ball of yarn I want to keep
in a basket even though I can make nothing of it.
The car radio carries angry voices
and I listen very closely though
it’s possible I am becoming numb
to all but kindness. Once, I was awake
several days in a row and believed
my burning lit up the sky. I write, Even though
there was no time for naps,
someone crocheted me a blanket.

Now, I sit with it in my lap
for a bit and promise to love
you back soon as I can.


I often write in November about my despair about shorter days (darkness) and colder temperature (chilled to the bone). Post U.S. Presidential election, those fears weigh me down even more, and so this poem is imbued with that even though it’s not how I set out. However, embedded in it, as well (like other times I’ve written about November), is some bright ball of yarn, some small kindness, a tiny bit of respite. That’s important now, too. We have a lot of work to do, but if you need to rest, rest. If you can make a blanket for someone, do so. Listen closely to the voices, but not just the ones on the radio. <3


You read here about why I’m posting drafts of poems online again, and you can find the growing collection of them here.


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