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“I know that I have died before—once in November.”

Anne Sexton

November has crept in through a back door. It is a strange month. One half clings on to the fading remnants of autumn. The other half marches, relentless, closing curtains, dragging us into the grips of winter. Anglo -Saxons referred to November as Blotmonath, meaning blood month; a time where they would traditionally slaughter cattle to provide food for winter.

I’ve been feeling a bit Novemberish this week, not knowing whether I was coming or going. I had a hundred ideas for Friday Thoughts, they have all been sacrificed to the wastepaper bin. Myrtle, the tortoise, has gone into hibernation, and there is an air of wanting to bed down and join her.

Not all is lost. Today is National Origami Day and some hope for the mounds of discarded paper staring at me from the bin. Even more exciting, only 45 more sleeps until Christmas Day. I’m starting to feel better already. While I ponder my Christmas shopping list, here is one of my poems about November, from my debut collection, All Mine. You can hear an audio version below the poem.


November graced us with an early gift.
Fourteen degrees of midday sun
Set on a north westerly breeze,
A reminder Winter was close by.

Tidal waters receded over Itchenor Reach
Towards Longmore Point as pockets
Of Brent Geese relaxed in sandy puddles,
Refreshed from their recent migration.

Saltern Copse offered exposed oak roots
For climbing and clambering, Tom chose
To go upwards; whilst an ageing trio exchanged
Hands, supporting fragile, less mobile limbs.

Amongst an aura of erosion, a young couple,
Their love den scattered with fairy-lights 
Along knots and gnarls and glasses
Of Pinot Grigio, celebrated new beginnings,

Hands locked as though an incoming
Wave could sweep them away forever. 
We exchanged glances knowing, 
Between tides, more roots would be revealed.

Has anyone got any good tips on getting through November? I would love to hear them. Have a good weekend.

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