November Days in New England
Posted on November 6, 2015
Write-up & Photos by Jacqueline Bennett newsandviewsjb.com
As a journalist turned – as well – photojournalist, I keep my Nikon COOLPIX close at hand. Truth is I’ve been a shutterbug since childhood and love snapping pictures almost as much as I love to write. Thus, despite having declared my adoration of the month of October in New England and documenting its beauty through my camera’s lens, I have found the arrival of November has also brought handsome landscapes and vignettes.
This morning I went in search of poems about November to post with these photos and was reminded of a Robert Frost piece titled, “My November Guest”. To my joyful astonishment I came across a recording of Frost himself reciting his poem which was originally published in The Forum in November 1912, as noted by online sources. It then became part of his first volume of poetry called A Boy’s Will published one year later.
An American poet well-known for his use of New England dialect – particularly enjoyed by this New England girl – and metaphorical images of nature, Frost moved back to his ancestral home of New England after the death of his father, according to http://www.poetryfoundation.org/bio/robert-frost. Born in San Francisco on March 26, 1874 he died in Boston in 1963. Frost was the first poet to read as part of a presidential inauguration program, that of Massachusetts – born John F. Kennedy in 1961.
Two of Frost’s most famous poems are favorites of mine, “Stopping By the Woods On A Snowy Evening” and “The Road Not Taken.”
Many an analysis has been written about “My November Guest”. What appears consistent in each is citation of Frost’s use of literary personification giving life to the concept of sorrow in the form of a woman. However, whether an actual woman in his life is represented in the poem remains a mystery.
Initially gripped by sadness, it is exquisitely written throughout giving way to appreciation of November days in the closing stanza; a sentiment to which I can relate as depicted through my recent November photos.
Listen to Robert Frost recite “My November Guest” ….