Saturday, November 20, 2010


The wild November come at last
Beneath a veil of rain;
The night winds blow its folds aside,
Her face is full of pain.
The latest of her race, she takes
The Autumn's vacant throne;
She has but one short moon to live,
And she must live alone.
Richard Henry Stoddart   November

I am restless these days.  I think it is the change of seasons, – ten days ago the valley was filled with glorious light and colour, and now the wind is raw and cold, the sky is grey and dour, the sun just slides above the hills, and goes immediately into hiding.  A few days ago there were interesting rolling clouds, some of them reaching half way down the the mountains,  but now there is a pewter lid on the sky, and here we are, worrying about whether the roses are well enough protected from this early winter weather, blown by the wind when we do go outdoors, getting out scarves and boots and hats and warm coat,  and just being generally at sixes and sevens….

In a few more days surely the Christmas spirit will appear, – or at least a realization that there are dozens of things that will require doing in the next six weeks, and that they will all delight me in the doing.

Today, in fits and starts, I have been refurbishing the computer with music, and many of the CD’s I have ripped have been carols and beautiful Christmas music.  I left them on long enough to transfer them, and then went on to the next disc, but the Schubert I saved for last and have been listening to The Trout this evening while I knit around and around on a handsome pair of green socks with white stripes.  Two more pair after this one is finished, and then I will look elsewhere for knitting to absorb me in January.

This morning, looking for some comfort food to jolly up the day, I made a nice puffy golden bread pudding and we had it with yesterday’s clam chowder, (which I made for the same reason)!

Maybe I will make Christmas lists tomorrow to stir my heart a little into bearing with this sorrowful weather.  Or perhaps it will snow, solving the rose problem and making the world beautiful and delicate and pure again.  Which reminds me of a hymn I love…..

All beautiful the march of days as seasons come and go
the hand that shaped the rose has wrought the crystal of the snow
has sent the silvery frost of heaven, the flowing waters sealed,
and laid a silent loveliness on hill and wood and field.

O’er white expanses sparkling pure the radiant morns unfold,
the solemn splendours of the night burn brighter through the cold,
life mounts in every throbbing vein, love deepens round the hearth,
and clearer sounds the angel hymn, good will to all on earth.

Frances Whitmarsh Wile, 1911
the melody is Forest Green by Ralph Vaughan Williams.

winter

6 comments:

Barb said...

Oh, Hildred, I can just see this in my mind's eye: "there is a pewter lid on the sky." I can't believe you almost have the socks finished. You should take a photo with them all in a row and post it (After the gift-giving, of course. Don't spoil the surprise)! I hope you have some snow for Thanksgiving - then your roses can stay warm under that white quilt until spring.

Barb said...

Well, I forgot you won't be celebrating Thanksgiving this week! At any rate, some lovely snow would add to the festive spirit. Also, bread pudding is my Husband's favorite.

Hildred and Charles said...

Charles is a great bread pudding fan too, Barb, - but the raisins have to be evenly distributed!!!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I would have wished you a Happy TG too if I hadn't been reminded by Barb (above) that I'm too late to do that. When we're in Oregon, I think of you as being in my "neck of the woods." One reason we came back to Oregon last month was to experience some Autumn weather -- but we are experiencing early Winter now as well. Cold, gray and windy...

I think that restless seasonal- change feeling (that you describe so beautifully) is good for us though. I can't imagine spending a whole lifetime someplace like Florida or SoCal where seasons don't exist.

Strawberry Jam Anne said...

Such a lovely post Hildred. The poem and the hymn are beautiful. We are also having "typical" November days and it all seems so dreary but the colour in the shops of the Christmas stock is so cheerful. I have begun making lists today too. A x

Wanda..... said...

Beautiful thoughts Hildred, you paint a lovely picture with your words, "there is a pewter lid on the sky."