Saturday, November 17, 2018

Something Told the Wild Geese, by Rachel Field

on November walk 2018
Something Told the Wild Geese
by Rachel Field

Something told the wild geese
It was time to go.
Though the fields lay golden
Something whispered,--"Snow."

Leaves were green and stirring,
Berries, luster-glossed,
But beneath warm feathers
Something cautioned,--"Frost."

All the sagging orchards
Steamed with amber spice,
but each wild breast stiffened
at remembered ice.

Something told the wild geese
It was time to fly,--
Summer sun was on their wings,
Winter in their cry.

Sharing my latest-discovered, and today's-most favorite poem. What a beautiful, evocative example of writing that speaks of this, the autumn-season-heading-into winter. Poet Rachel Field (1894-1942) was also a novelist, children's book author, and playwright. She was the first woman to win the Newbery Award  (1930) for outstanding children's fiction. The award was for her book Hitty, Her First Hundred Years, a story told in the POV of a tiny wooden doll who gets separated from the little girl who owns her and the doll's subsequent travels. I haven't read the book yet but now plan to find a copy, especially after I learned that the doll that inspired Ms. Field's story currently resides at the Stockbridge Library Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.

Want to hear a beautiful rendition of the poem, Something Told the Wild Geese? You can hear it sung to music by the Von Trapp Children--who themselves come from a storied past, their great-grandparents being none other than the Von Trapp couple that inspired the cherished movie classic, The Sound of Music. The song link can be found here on youtube.

What about you, any favorite fall poems that speak to you this time of year?

(and, if you're a Sound of Music fan like me, you might also like to experience the Von Trapp great-grandkids singing Edelweiss. You can find a beautiful sample of their rendition here.)


  1. Actually, this has always been one of my favorites. I remember learning it as a child, and some of the words came back to me when I read your headline. Another favorite is Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken" which always seems like a fall poem to me because of the reference to "a yellow wood." And of course, there's "Over the River and Through the Woods" - if you count songs as poetry!

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family, Kenda!

    1. Don't know how I missed this poem in my childhood, Peggy--just discovered it in an old book on my shelf copyrighted 1948! Might be fun to memorize it now, at this age, and surprise the kids around the Thanksgiving table Thursday? Hmmm, just a thought :-) Many wishes for a happy Thanksgiving back to you. Hope you have a wonderful day...

  2. Don’t know as that I can think of fall poetry, but geese flying overhead always feels sacred to me, and takes my breath away. You can hear them approaching from so far off, and watch them coming toward you on the wind. Then they fly over with a mighty rush, and leave silence behind them.

    1. Cathy, you've written poetically yourself here about geese--beautiful words! '...then they fly over with a mighty rush and leave silence behind them.' Love this. Thanks for sharing :-) Wishing you a blessed Thanksgiving. Hope things are going well for you and your family...