I am the autumnal sun
by Henry David Thoreau

Sometimes a mortal feels in himself Nature
— not his Father but his Mother stirs
within him– and he becomes immortal with her

I am the autumnal sun,
With autumn gales my race is run;
When will the hazel put forth its flowers,
Or the grape ripen under my bowers?
When will the harvest or the hunter’s moon
Turn my midnight into mid-noon?
I am all sere and yellow,
And to my core mellow.
The mast is dropping within my woods,
The winter is lurking within my moods,
And the rustling of the withered leaf
Is the constant music of my grief….

The Autumn

by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Go, sit upon the lofty hill,
And turn your eyes around,
Where waving woods and waters wild
Do hymn an autumn sound.
The summer sun is faint on them —
The summer flowers depart —
Sit still — as all transform’d to stone,
Except your musing heart.

Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile–
William Cullen Bryant


The leaves are falling, falling as if from afar,
as if withered in the distant gardens of heaven;
with nay-saying gestures they fall.

And in the nights falls the heavy earth
from all the stars into loneliness.

We all are falling. This hand there falls.
And look at the others: it is in all of them.

And yet there is one, who holds all this falling
with infinite gentleness in his hands.

Day in Autumn or Herbsttag

Herr: es ist Zeit. Der Sommer war sehr groß.
Leg deinen Schatten auf die Sonnenuhren,
und auf den Fluren laß die Winde los.

Befiehl den letzten Fruchten voll zu sein;
gieb innen noch zwei südlichere Tage,
dränge sie zur Vollendung hin und jage
die letzte Süße in den schweren Wein.

Wer jetzt kein Haus hat, baut sich keines mehr.
Wer jetzt allein ist, wird es lange bleiben,
wird wachen, lesen, lange Briefe schreiben
und wird in den Alleen hin und her
unruhig wandern, wenn die Blätter treiben.

Translated By Mary Kinzie

After the summer’s yield, Lord, it is time
to let your shadow lengthen on the sundials
and in the pastures let the rough winds fly.

As for the final fruits, coax them to roundness.
Direct on them two days of warmer light
to hale them golden toward their term, and harry
the last few drops of sweetness through the wine.

Whoever’s homeless now, will build no shelter;
who lives alone will live indefinitely so,
waking up to read a little, draft long letters,
and, along the city’s avenues,
fitfully wander, when the wild leaves loosen.

By Rainer Maria Rilke 1875–1926

Autumn days are here again!

In autumn when the trees are brown
The little leaves come tumbling down
They do not make the slightest sound
But lie so quietly on the ground
Until the wind comes puffing by
And blows them off towards the sky.

The winds will blow their own freshness into you,
and the storms their energy,
while cares will drop away from you
like the leaves of Autumn.

John Muir

Ode to Autumn

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the mossed cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimmed their clammy cell.

John Keats


I saw old Autumn in the misty morn
Stand shadowless like silence, listening
To silence, for no lonely bird would sing
Into his hollow ear from woods forlorn,
Nor lowly hedge nor solitary thorn;—
Shaking his languid locks all dewy bright
With tangled gossamer that fell by night,
Pearling his coronet of golden corn.

Thomas Hood

Autumn Fires

In the other gardens
And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfires
See the smoke trail!

Pleasant summer over
And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
The grey smoke towers.

Sing a song of seasons!
Something bright in all!
Flowers in the summer,
Fires in the fall!

Robert Louis Stevenson

To Autumn

O Autumn, Laden with fruit, and stain’d
With the blood of the grape, pass not, but sit
Beneath my shady roof; there thou may’st rest,
And tune thy jolly voice to my fresh pipe,
And all the daughters of the year shall dance!
Sing now the lusty song of fruits and flowers.

The narrow bud opens her beauties to
The sun, and love runs in her thrilling veins;
Blossoms hang round the brows of Morning, and
Flourish down the bright cheek of modest Eve,
Till clust’ring Summer breaks forth into singing,
And feather’d clouds strew flowers round her head.

The spirits of the air live in the smells
Of fruit; and Joy, with pinions light, roves round
The gardens, or sits singing in the trees.’
Thus sang the jolly Autumn as he sat,
Then rose, girded himself, and o’er the bleak
Hills fled from our sight; but left his golden load.

William Blake

A Vagabond Song

There is something in the autumn that is native to my blood—
Touch of manner, hint of mood;
And my heart is like a rhyme,
With the yellow and the purple and the crimson keeping time.

The scarlet of the maples can shake me like a cry
Of bugles going by.
And my lonely spirit thrills
To see the frosty asters like a smoke upon the hills.

There is something in October sets the gypsy blood astir;
We must rise and follow her,
When from every hill of flame
She calls and calls each vagabond by name.

Bliss Carmen

Autumn in Russia

The wood seems to be tired.
Preparation of all alive to the lingering somnambulist.
Disturbing feelings of forthcoming separation, loss.
The last elaborate trees apparel in yellow-orange-purple colors.
Autumn had sewed to the trees exclusive sundresses.
And they flaunt, as if brides at the fair.
But tomorrow they will be shamelessly naked
by the severe husband November.

…Hard, gray-haired tresses of grasses had stretched along
a cooling down body of the earth –
the old mother-wet nurse.
Bustle of all alive. It’s no time to run into a stupor
with silly contemplation of the rash nature’s changes.
The senior brother of November is even more harsh.
Struggle for a survival comes from subconsciousness…
Cold lead jets flow downwards from the sky-watering can.
The empty, decomposed bird’s-nest-caps are based upon
forgotten old pegs-antlers.
Sensation of the cold, the fallen asleep unreality…
Like winter landscapes of Brueghel.
Only fur-trees as an old maidens-votaries are majesticly quiet.
The God is mercy.
He had allowed them not to remove the green dresses.
And tomorrow the house-keeper of November will cover
the traces and marks of marriage-night
by white sheet.
Birches, maples, aspens will fall asleep at last…
Till the Spring…

Vladimir Markelov

Year of the Soul

Komm in den totgesagten park und schau:
Der schimmer ferner lächelnder gestade ·
Der reinen wolken unverhofftes blau
Erhellt die weiher und die bunten pfade.

Dort nimm das tiefe gelb · das weiche grau
Von birken und von buchs · der wind ist lau ·
Die späten rosen welkten noch nicht ganz ·
Erlese küsse sie und flicht den kranz ·

Vergiss auch diese lezten astern nicht ·
Den purpur um die ranken wilder reben
Und auch was übrig blieb von grünem leben
Verwinde leicht im herbstlichen gesicht.

Come to the park they say is dead, and view
The shimmer of the smiling shores beyond,
The stainless clouds with unexpected blue
Diffuse a light on motley path and pond.

The tender grey, the burning yellow seize
Of birch and boxwood, mellow is the breeze.
Not wholly do the tardy roses wane,
So kiss and gather them and wreathe the chain.

The purple on the twists of wilding vine,
The last of asters you shall not forget,
And what of living verdure lingers yet,
Around the autumn vision lightly twine.

Stefan George

Japanese Autumn Poems

When I am lonely
And go for a walk, I see
Everywhere the same
Autumnal dusk.

-The Monk Ryozen

Deep in the mountain,
Trampling the red maple leaves,
I hear the stag cry out
In the sorrow of Autumn.

-The Priest Sarumaru

Autumn evening-
A crow on a bare branch.

On this road,
No one will follow me
In the Autumn evening.


The colored leaves
Have hidden the paths
On the autumn mountain.
How can I find my girl,
Wandering on ways that I do not know?

In the Autumn mountains
The colored leaves are falling.
If I could hold them back,
I could still see her.



Summer left me weary
Summer left me crying
And in Summer’s dusty grave
My broken heart is lying.

So, come Autumn, in your madness
In your sun-filled delight
Dance to the wind’s wild music
In your skirts of gaudy bright.

Come, Autumn, come in laughing
In chartreuse and amber gold
Come in your mauve and browns
And wear your scarlet bold.

Come, Autumn, come in singing
Gay and mad and free
In wild entrancing splendor
To heal the heart of me!

Bonnie Brown Streubel

And here is a bit of prose I found on line that should appeal to my Anglophyle friends:

My only experience of autumn in Europe is Oxford, but it is enough.  What could be more wonderful that rays of morning sun peeping through the maples to cast rays cut in fog on swans on the Cherwell, burnt chestnut leaves hanging down in front, the spire of Magdalene rising towards the sun?  Or ivy vines turning purple and framed in frost on the stones by Christ Church?  Or maybe best of all, the oaks dipping their branches in the pond behind the Kilns in a strong autumn breeze, birches and maples on the hill behind swaying as if nyads from Narnia had come to pay homage to their old friend Jack?

David Marshall


Октябрь уж наступил — уж роща отряхает
Последние листы с нагих своих ветвей;
Дохнул осенний хлад — дорога промерзает.
Журча еще бежит за мельницу ручей,
Но пруд уже застыл; сосед мой поспешает
В отъезжие поля с охотою своей,
И страждут озими от бешеной забавы,
И будит лай собак уснувшие дубравы.

Теперь моя пора: я не люблю весны;
Скучна мне оттепель; вонь, грязь — весной я болен;
Кровь бродит; чувства, ум тоскою стеснены.
Суровою зимой я более доволен,
Люблю ее снега; в присутствии луны
Как легкий бег саней с подругой быстр и волен,
Когда под соболем, согрета и свежа,
Она вам руку жмет, пылая и дрожа!

Как весело, обув железом острым ноги,
Скользить по зеркалу стоячих, ровных рек!
А зимних праздников блестящие тревоги?..
Но надо знать и честь; полгода снег да снег,
Ведь это наконец и жителю берлоги,
Медведю, надоест. Нельзя же целый век
Кататься нам в санях с Армидами младыми
Иль киснуть у печей за стеклами двойными.

Ох, лето красное! любил бы я тебя,
Когда б не зной, да пыль, да комары, да мухи.
Ты, все душевные способности губя,
Нас мучишь; как поля, мы страждем от засухи;
Лишь как бы напоить, да освежить себя —
Иной в нас мысли нет, и жаль зимы старухи,
И, проводив ее блинами и вином,
Поминки ей творим мороженым и льдом.

Дни поздней осени бранят обыкновенно,
Но мне она мила, читатель дорогой,
Красою тихою, блистающей смиренно.
Так нелюбимое дитя в семье родной
К себе меня влечет. Сказать вам откровенно,
Из годовых времен я рад лишь ей одной,
В ней много доброго; любовник не тщеславный,
Я нечто в ней нашел мечтою своенравной.

Как это объяснить? Мне нравится она,
Как, вероятно, вам чахоточная дева
Порою нравится. На смерть осуждена,
Бедняжка клонится без ропота, без гнева.
Улыбка на устах увянувших видна;
Могильной пропасти она не слышит зева;
Играет на лице еще багровый цвет.
Она жива еще сегодня, завтра нет.

Унылая пора! очей очарованье!
Приятна мне твоя прощальная краса —
Люблю я пышное природы увяданье,
В багрец и в золото одетые леса,
В их сенях ветра шум и свежее дыханье,
И мглой волнистою покрыты небеса,
И редкий солнца луч, и первые морозы,
И отдаленные седой зимы угрозы.

И с каждой осенью я расцветаю вновь;
Здоровью моему полезен русской холод;
К привычкам бытия вновь чувствую любовь:
Чредой слетает сон, чредой находит голод;
Легко и радостно играет в сердце кровь,
Желания кипят — я снова счастлив, молод,
Я снова жизни полн — таков мой организм
(Извольте мне простить ненужный прозаизм).

Ведут ко мне коня; в раздолии открытом,
Махая гривою, он всадника несет,
И звонко под его блистающим копытом
Звенит промерзлый дол и трескается лед.
Но гаснет краткий день, и в камельке забытом
Огонь опять горит — то яркий свет лиет,
То тлеет медленно — а я пред ним читаю
Иль думы долгие в душе моей питаю.

И забываю мир — и в сладкой тишине
Я сладко усыплен моим воображеньем,
И пробуждается поэзия во мне:
Душа стесняется лирическим волненьем,
Трепещет и звучит, и ищет, как во сне,
Излиться наконец свободным проявленьем —
И тут ко мне идет незримый рой гостей,
Знакомцы давние, плоды мечты моей.

И мысли в голове волнуются в отваге,
И рифмы легкие навстречу им бегут,
И пальцы просятся к перу, перо к бумаге,
Минута — и стихи свободно потекут.
Так дремлет недвижим корабль в недвижной влаге,
Но чу! — матросы вдруг кидаются, ползут
Вверх, вниз — и паруса надулись, ветра полны;
Громада двинулась и рассекает волны.

Плывет. Куда ж нам плыть?...

I October has arrived - the woods have tossed 
Their final leaves from naked branches; 
A breath of autumn chill - the road begins to freeze, 
The stream still murmurs as it passes by the mill, 
The pond, however's frozen; and my neighbor hastens to his far-flung fields 
with all the members of his hunt. 
The winter wheat will suffer from this wild fun, 
And baying hounds awake the slumbering groves. 

II This is my time: I am not fond of spring; 
The tiresome thaw, the stench, the mud - spring sickens me. 
The blood ferments, and yearning binds the heart and mind.. 
With cruel winter I am better satisfied, 
I love the snows; when in the moonlight 
A sleigh ride swift and carefree with a friend. 
Who, warm and rosy 'neath a sable mantle, 
Burns, trembles as she clasps your hand. 

III What fun it is, with feet in sharp steel shod, 
To skim the mirror of the smooth and solid streams! 
And how about the shining stir of winter feasts? . . 
But in the end you must admit that naught but snow 
For half the year will even bore a bear 
Deep in his den. We cannot ride for ages, 
In sleighs with youthful nymphs 
Or sulk around the stove behind storm windows. 

IV O, summer fair! I would have loved you, too, 
Except for heat and dust and gnats and flies. 
You kill off all our mental power, 
Torment us; and like fields, we suffer from the drought; 
To take a drink, refresh ourselves somehow - 
We think of nothing else, and long for lady Winter, 
And, having bid farewell to her with pancakes and with wine, 
We hold a wake to honor her with ice-cream and with ice. 

V The latter days of fall are often cursed, 
But as for me, kind reader, she is precious 
In all her quiet beauty, mellow glow. 
Thus might a child, disfavored in its family, 
Draw my regard. To tell you honestly, 
Of all the times of year, I cherish her alone. 
She's full of worth; and I, a humble lover, 
Have found in her peculiar charms. 

VI How can this be explained? I favor her 
As you might one day find yourself attracted 
To a consumptive maid. Condemned to death, 
The poor child languishes without complaint or anger. 
A smile plays upon her withering lips; 
She cannot sense as yet the gaping maw of death; 
A crimson glow still flits across her face. 
Today she lives, tomorrow she is gone. 

VII A melancholy time! So charming to the eye! 
Your beauty in its parting pleases me - 
I love the lavish withering of nature, 
The gold and scarlet raiment of the woods, 
The crisp wind rustling o'er their threshold, 
The sky engulfed by tides of rippled gloom, 
The sun's scarce rays, approaching frosts, 
And gray-haired winter threatening from afar. 

VIII When autumn comes, I bloom anew; 
The Russian frost does wonders for my health; 
Anew I fall in love with life's routine: 
Betimes I'm soothed by dreams, betimes by hunger caught; 
The blood flows free and easy in my heart, 
Abrim with passion; once again, I'm happy, young, 
I'm full of life - such is my organism (Excuse me for this awful prosaism) 

IX My horse is brought to me; in open field, 
With flying mane, he carries fast his rider, 
And with his shining hooves he hammers out a song 
Upon the frozen, ringing vale, and crackling ice. 
But fleeting day dies out, new fire comes alive 
Inside the long-forgotten stove-- it blazes bright, 
Then slowly smoulders - as I read before it, 
Or nourish long and heartfelt thoughts. 

X And I forget the world - in silence sweet, 
I'm sweetly lulled by my imagination, 
And poetry awakens deep inside: My heart is churned with lyric agitation, 
It trembles, moans, and strives, as if in sleep, 
To pour out in the end a free statement- 
And here they come - a ghostly swarm of guests, 
My long-lost friends, the fruits of all my dream. 

XI My mind is overcome by dashing thoughts, 
And rhymes come running eagerly to meet them, 
My hand demands a pen; the pen - a sheet of paper. 
Another minute - and my verse will freely flow. 
Thus slumbers an immobile ship caught in immobile waters, 
But lo! - the sailors rush all of a sudden, crawl 
Up top, then down - sails billow, filled with wind; 
The massive structure moves, and cuts the waves. 

XII It sails. But whither do we sail?...

A. L Pushkin


Mild is the parting year, and sweet
The odour of the falling spray;
Life passes on more rudely fleet,
And balmless is its closing day.

I wait its close, I court its gloom,
But mourn that never must there fall
Or on my breast or on my tomb
The tear that would have soothed it all.

Walter Savage Landor

autumn disrobes-

casting off a brocade

of falling leaves ~Noa

Vibrant: Photo courtesy of A Meditative Journey