November for Beginners — a poem by Rita Dove

Dusk in the neighborhood
November, last year.

Just the right poem for this time of year, by one of Guion’s professors, the magnificent Rita Dove.

November for Beginners

By Rita Dove

Snow would be the easy
way out—that softening
sky like a sigh of relief
at finally being allowed
to yield. No dice.
We stack twigs for burning
in glistening patches
but the rain won’t give.

So we wait, breeding
mood, making music
of decline. We sit down
in the smell of the past
and rise in a light
that is already leaving.
We ache in secret,
memorizing

a gloomy line
or two of German.
When spring comes
we promise to act
the fool. Pour,
rain! Sail, wind,
with your cargo of zithers!

November 1981

. . . . . . . . .

Happy Thanksgiving in advance! We are looking forward to being back in the Old North State and celebrating with my family. Lots to be thankful for this year, as with all years.

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4 thoughts on “November for Beginners — a poem by Rita Dove

  1. So perfect. What a lovely poem for these dark days of winter in late November. Happy Thanksgiving to you and Pyrrah and Guion.

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