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Random Act of Metaphor: Cedar Waxwings in Wind-swept November Trees

November 11th, 2012 by Michael Dyet

“No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees / No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds – November! ~ Thomas Hood, English Poet, 1799 – 1845

Hmmm, was that small flock of Cedar Waxwings a chance occurrence or a gentle reprimand?

The gray and sober days of mid November are upon us. After October’s spectacular pageant of ever-changing colours, November seems such a sombre month. The trees are lifeless skeletons. The leaves have withered and been raked into submission. The sky above is a watered down, blue-gray slate.

It seems such a betwixt and between time of year. Technically still autumn by the calendar but long past the charms of that season. The chill but elegant graces of winter are still only on nature’s drawing board.

Such were my thoughts as I took a short walk along the lakefront today. The winter ducks were in but staying well offshore in the choppy bay. There seemed little to be enthused about.

But then I detected a lisping call. Binoculars up and scanning. Graceful Cedar Waxwings, sleek and crested, waxy yellowish green accented by a bright yellow tail band. A half dozen of them flitting about gregariously, despite the November pall, in the wind-swept trees along the path.

A random act of metaphor, a gentle reprimand, to remind me that I should be more gracious. Nature needs a rest after spending herself exuberantly on lush summer and gaudy autumn. She needs a month to recharge and reinvent herself.

November, perhaps, is nature’s way of teaching me patience – a lesson I seem to need to learn over and over. Never my strong suit but I shall try again. I shall make friends with November.

~ Michael Robert Dyet is the author of “Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel” – double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at or the novel online companion at

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1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Joe Jan 17, 2013 at 5:48 pm

    That’s not just logic. That’s really sneisble.