Autumnal Song

October has finally reached its sullen stage, and is turned damp, grey, and chilly. The sky right now is a dull, milky shroud, which is rather startling after the bright blue of the weekend. It is drizzling, showering, and  misting in turns, and everything is permeated by the smell of rain on the dry earth. (Or, in awesome words, petrichor!)

I love it.

Autumn rain in Michigan

Fall is my favorite time of year. Though I am far away from the Michigan and other Midwestern (and New England, Northwestern, etc.) forests that are bringing out the crimson and ochre (both burnt and unburnt) color schemes, my family has promised to send me all the most colorful leaves that they can find and wax.

This is the time of year when funky scarves, cozy sweater, hot chocolate and hot toddies all reemerge. And, strangely, they feel like fresh, new joys.

This is also the time when I feel the ache to read Robert Frost’s poetry. Which is rather ludicrous, because I have read so little of his work that I should feel that ache all the time. Nonetheless, for me Frost evokes the sights, sounds, and smells of Autumn. And Autumn loves to be articulated in his words. Sometimes when I am reading Frost, I swear I smell woodsmoke, cinnamon and petrichor.

But I rarely make it far into Frosts poems.  Usually I begin reading his collection, and then stumble across one that flashes such brilliant images and senses that I stop and read only that poem for several weeks, savoring it slowly. Last year, it was My November Guest. This year, my fancy has taken a slightly differant turn.

 

Bond and Free

By Robert Frost

Love has earth to which she clings
With hills and circling arms about—
Wall within wall to shut fear out.
But Thought has need of no such things,
For Thought has a pair of dauntless wings.

On snow and sand and turf,
I see Where Love has left a printed trace
With straining in the world’s embrace.
And such is Love and glad to be.
But Thought has shaken his ankles free.

Thought cleaves the interstellar gloom
And sits in Sirius’ disc all night,
Till day makes him retrace his flight,
With smell of burning on every plume,
Back past the sun to an earthly room.

His gains in heaven are what they are.
Yet some say Love by being thrall
And simply staying possesses all
In several beauty that Thought fares far
To find fused in another star.

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