On the Second November’s Poems


In school, November, traditionally, is the shortest month.  That means, of course, the fewest number of poems for my classes.  November is also deer- hunting month here in mountainous central Maine, so many of the poems I chose for the month had to do with deer, and the woods, and things that the boys in class would be able to relate to.  Because I am a Brontë freak, I threw in a bunch of Emily, as well; she’s a November kind of girl, with a dark and lowering mindset.  She’s stubborn, like November.
November is also the month of birthdays for many of the best people I know–not to mention the traditional month of Thanksgiving.  Suffice it to say that I’m thankful for all those people, and all these poems.

November 1, Tuesday: Meg Kearney, “Ticket

Meg Kearney

November 2, Wednesday: Jane Kenyon, “In Memory of Jack”

November 3, Thursday: Hal Sirowitz, “Reusing Words

November 4:  Friday: Dawn Potter, “Nostalgia

November 7, Monday: Ellen Bryant Voigt, “Apple Tree”

Emily Brontë

November 8, Tuesday: Linda Pastan, “November Rain

November 9, Wednesday: David Adams, “Preface for the Feast of All Souls”

November 10, Thursday: Thomas Hardy, “The Man He Killed” (for Veterans’ Day)

November 14, Monday: Emily Brontë, “Fall, Leaves, Fall

November 15, Tuesday: Richard Wilbur, “Then

November 16, Wednesday:Kenneth Rexroth, “Falling Leaves and Early Snow

November 17: Thursday: Laure-Anne Bosselaar, “Birthday” (because it’s her birthday!)

November 18, Friday: Emily Brontë, “Spellbound

November 21, Monday: David Adams, “Sans” (This is one of my favorite by David Adams–it is November in spirit, if not in fact.)

November 22, Tuesday: Cleopatra Mathis, “Writing”

Cleopatra Mathis

November 23-25:  Thanksgiving break!

November 28, Monday: Ruth Stone, “Advice

November 29, Tuesday: Andrea Hollander Budy, “What I Need It For”  (This one was for me:  I needed the cheering of the flowers, so I gave myself the bouquet.)

November 30, Wednesday: Rosemary Starace, “Kind Thoughts” (I took this one out of Letters to the World: Poems from the Wom-Po Listserv, an anthology I had the great pleasure of appearing in a couple of years ago.)

Now:  onto December, where all the poems will be presents.

Postscript:

One of the most gratifying parts of this continued poetry experiment is simply this:  my students expect that we will start class with a poem.  There is no longer the level of complaint (poems?  Ew!) that I got at the beginning of the first year–there are no longer complaints at all.  Is this success?  Is the experiment changing expectations or atmosphere?  I’d like to think it is.

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7 Comments

  1. Jenny Doughty

    I think it’s a hugely successful experiment. Nice choice of poems – I’m assuming Ruth Stone is there partly in honour of her death a week or so ago as well as being well-deserved.

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    • Jenny, I did choose the Stone poem for just that reason–it’s a great loss…but 96 years worth of poetry!

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  2. Yay! You are so great! XX

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  3. Anne, thank you so much for choosing my poem and for sharing it here! I love that you share a poem every day with your students–what a generous project. And I was so moved to be included among such illustrious company.

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    • Rosemary, I have your poem bookmarked in Letters to the World with a picture of my daughter Rosalie, who is all the daughters you write of, petals and everything. Thank you for your poem.

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  4. Thank YOU, Anne. I’m so touched to know this! I love that your daughter’s name is Rosalie! Sweet greetings to her.

    And it’s so nice to finally “meet” you, years after the anthology. 🙂

    Like

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