November

DSCF1501 And I asked myself about the present: how wide it was, how deep it was, how much was mine to keep.  ~ Kurt Vonnegut (b. 11.11.22)

A long walk on a gray day in November can be a walk through heartbreak, through all the heartbreaks of your life, even those that haven’t happened but are yet to come.

Nostalgia, recollection, memories, loss: they all swirl like the leaves and slowly settle as peace returns and new patterns of connection and understanding rise. November’s invitation is to gently and deeply mine the gold of our lives. There is heartbreak, but so perfectly balanced by gratitude.

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DSCF1504I wouldn’t call my November walks depressing; instead, they’re healing, gift, and necessary. My unconscious provides the mental video; it flips the scrapbook pages of my life and decides where to pause; I only attend, watch, feel. Walk and watch and allow what rises to be honored.

DSCF1548Any walk, any time of year can provide such healing, but November’s backdrop of rust and brown and black and fading yellows, and everything vital slowing and dying back, and all the animals gathering, burrowing, or leaving: it all seems to gently remind us of our losses and our own mortality, and to invite our own time of clearing and harvesting. What to hold, what to release?

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DSCF1540Maybe it’s my Celtic ancestors’ love of wisdom and acceptance of sorrow and the ways I hear them calling to me in November, or the deep pleasure of sudden red and green wagons interrupting the monotonic browns and golds, or all of these and the veil of mystery clearly cloaking everything revealed, shimmering, as at no other time of year, but I’ve come to treasure the month and its pervasive atmosphere of spiritual retreat.

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DSCF1517And, then, of course, the great gift waits before me: the shining present and the peace to discern, like Vonnegut, how wide it is, how deep it is, and how much is mine to keep.

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14 thoughts on “November

  1. A beautiful gentle post with some stunning pics….I especially liked the little arch at the end and that mysterious pic with the blurry background.
    How odd, this post has just described what I have been doing on my autumn walks but I hadn’t realized. I too have been thinking along these lines while walking the dogs…..It’s as though you’ve read my mind and put my thoughts down far more beautifully than I actually think them.
    Ahhhhh….yes we always have the shining present. xxxx

  2. Thank you, Miss Dina; the blurry one was taken one very foggy morning…that’s our canoe in the background. 🙂 I’ll bet your thoughts are every bit as beautiful as you are, and I wish you gentle peace, too, as your month and walks continue. Isn’t it just the best to have 4-legged companions walking with you?! We walked in our first snow today: Ah!

  3. Beautiful, as always. I love autumn, and maybe it is due to the wistfulness that attends it. You captured it in both your words and pictures here. ❤

    • Thank you TJ; Our mutual love of the season and its surprises and mystery doesn’t surprise me, sweet sister. I love that you took the time to visit and share. Thank you, and joy to your week, 🙂

  4. November is a very solemn month, everything once green and lush now lays brown and barren. Not any easy month to adjust to. Loved your take on it and the pictures indeed tell the story do they not. Definitely a time for introspection and as you say release of what no longer is needed in our lives. Well done as always Kitty. You master both words and camera so well. Wishing all of full moon cottage a loving Thanksgiving….Blessings to you…VK xxoo

    • Oh, VK; I really needed your words today. Thank you so much and blessings to your own kind and generous heart. I hope your Thanksgiving will overflow with blessing.

  5. Dearest Kitty,
    This is only the second time in 14 years that I will be spending the stretch of November into December in Finland without travelling back East where the tropical sun awaits. In previous years I had always shunned and dreaded the darkness of November. But this year as I start to take it in one day at a time, through the rain showers, misty gloom and through the piercing sunshine which still visits occasionally in November, I too am starting to recognise the gifts of this season. Your tribute to November is a gift of healing to me. To allow myself the space and room to mourn. And also to dream. And more importantly to cherish every season of my life with a radiant acquiescence. With love, Sharon

    • Radiant acquiescence, yes; that is a very beautiful way of naming the call I feel/hear to meet the present with openness, and November truly helps me with this. Thank you, Sharon, for visiting and deepening my ideas. I wish you great and gentle peace in your journey, as you close the year’s circle in Finland…may it lead to light and warmth. 🙂

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