Editors' Musings

Blog: A Poem for October

Catherine Boeckmann

Welcome October! For your enjoyment, I've posted this beautiful poem by Robert Frost. In it, he urges nature to slow down—before the leaves fall and the chilly weather begins!

October” by Robert Frost

(from A Boy’s Will, 1913)

O hushed October morning mild,
Thy leaves have ripened to the fall;
Tomorrow's wind, if it be wild,
Should waste them all.
The crows above the forest call;
Tomorrow they may form and go.
O hushed October morning mild,
Begin the hours of this day slow,
Make the day seem to us less brief.
Hearts not averse to being beguiled,
Beguile us in the way you know.
Release one leaf at break of day;
At noon release another leaf;
One from our trees, one far away.
Retard the sun with gentle mist;
Enchant the land with amethyst.
Slow, slow!
For the grapes' sake, if they were all,
Whose leaves already are burnt with frost,
Whose clustered fruit must else be lost—
For the grapes' sake along the wall.

Did you know that Robert Frost was a farmer poet? I recently attended a local library event about “Robert Frost and New Hampshire.” Frost owned a small, 18-acre farm in Derry, New Hampshire. He would milk cows at midnight in order to stay up late writing poetry and not have to get up too early!

Frost moved to his farm in 1900 at a time when thousands of people were abandoning farms due to industrialization. Towns in the area started “Old Home Days” celebrations (a tradition practiced today), inviting former residents to spend a week of summer back “home” to experience the best of rural life.

Many of Frost’s poems—such as “October”—reflect his love of nature but also seem to speak to that loss of old-time country values. He truly brought the American landscape and spirit to life.

At The Old Farmer’s Almanac, we have our own farmer poets. If you have a copy of the 2010 Almanac, you’ll see the “Farmer’s Calendar” musings on the right side of the monthly calendar pages, the heart of our Almanac.

You can also listen to an audio version of the monthly “Farmer’s Calendar” on Almanac.com read by author Castle Freeman Jr. Just click here for our October podcast (about pumpkin sprawl).

Are you a farmer poet or can you recommend any living farmer poets? Please let us know. Or, if you simply enjoy poetry and verse (which we include in all of our Almanac Companion newsletters), we invite your comments below.

We wish you an enchanted October!


Add new comment

This time of year in Indiana

This time of year in Indiana is certainly a glorious season for us to experience many of the unique gifts nature has given us. As a friend of mine said, what could make a person more joyful than to walk outside on a bright sunny day and feel the crisp morning air on your face, to experience the unmistakable smell of a cozy fire burning in a chimney nearby or to witness the sights and sounds of children giggling as they jump into piles of incredibly bright red, yellow, brown and green leaves?

This poem fully reflects the

This poem fully reflects the sights around me, here in my little Montana mountain town. This morning we awoke to snow on the surrounding peaks...and the accompanying crisp, cold air only aids the leaves still on the trees in turning even yet more brilliant in colour. October is the most beautiful month, in my opinion, and poems about it are my favourite.

Autumn, Welcome! Your name

Autumn, Welcome! Your name certainly is an ode to this time of year. Thanks for giving us a glimpse of nature's glory up in MT.

I thought this was a

I thought this was a wonderful poem. It's so visual--with the leaves dropping. Somehow, this poem helps you get away from all the stress around you. As I get older, I love autumn more and more. In music terms, it's a slow and easy "adagio" versus a crisp "allegro" --though I'm sure some feel the opposite!

Beautiful poem. Of course, in

Beautiful poem. Of course, in LA - we just want to get past the Santa Ana Wind/ Wildfire season. This makes me long for Autumn in New England!