Monday, October 11, 2010

November The Book of Days

The Book of Days: A Miscellany of Popular Antiquities in Connection with the Calendar, Including Anecdote, Biography, - History, Curiosities of Literature and Oddities of Human Life and Character, Robert Chambers.
This image is in the public domain in the United States, where Works published prior to 1978 were copyright protected for a maximum of 75 years. See Circular 1 "COPYRIGHT BASICS" PDF from the U.S. Copyright Office. Works published before 1923 are now in the public domain.

and also in countries that figure copyright from the date of death of the artist (post mortem auctoris in this case Robert Chambers (10 July 1802 – 17 March 1871) and that most commonly run for a period of 50 to 70 years from December 31st of that year.

November is the pioneer of Winter, who comes, with his sharp winds and keen frosts, to cut down every bladed and leafy bit of green that is standing up. so as to make more room for the coming snowflakes to fall on the level waste, and form a great bed for Winter to sleep upon. He blows all the decaying leaves into dreary nollowg, to fill them up, so that when Winter is out on the long dark nights, or half-blinded with the great feathery flakes, he may not fall into them.

If a living flower still stands above its dead companions, it bends its head like a mourner over a grave, and seems calling on our mother-earth to be let in. The swollen streams roar and hurry along, as if they were eager to bury themselves in the great rivers, for they have no flowers to mirror, no singing of birds to tempt them to linger among the pebbles and listen, no green bending sprays to toss to and fro, and play with on their way, and they seem to make a deep complaining as they rush along between the high brimming banks.

The few cattle that are out, stand head to head, as if each tried to warm the other with its breath, or turned round to shut out the gloomy prospect that surrounds them, laying down their ears at every whistle of the wind through the naked hedges. Even the clouds, when they break up, have a ragged and vagrant look, and appear to wander homeless about the sky, for there is no golden fire in the far west now for them to gather about, and sun themselves in its warmth: they seem to move along in doubt and fear, as if trying to find the blue sky they have lost. The woodman returns home at night with his head bent down, feeling there is nothing cheerful to look round upon, while his dog keeps close behind, seeming to avail himself of the little shelter his master affords from the wind, while they move on together.

The pleasantest thing we see is the bundle of fagots ne carries on his shoulders, aa it reminds us of home—the crackling fire, the cleanswept hearth, and the cozy-looking kettle, that sits 'singing a quiet tune,' on the hob. We pity the poor fellow with the bundle under his arm, who stands looking up at the guide-post where three roads meet, and hope he has not far to go on such a utormy and moonless night.

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