I give my thanks to November,
A month colored in red, orange and brown hues,
A time that is marked by a sudden halt of the hot summer weather,
A time that ushers in a breeze that cuts sharply across our cheeks, that we inhale with a near grimace, but nevertheless we invite the bitterness because it’s a change of pace.
Rain comes, at last,
To purify us of the stresses, anxieties, burdens of the year,
Just in time for our transition to the new one.
The whole world going dark earlier invites us to
Slow down and watch the most vibrant sunsets, our hands entangled together,
Shivering with anticipation for the semester to end.
Blinding was the eagerness to catch that flight home in November for a change of scenery,
A change of pace, to slow down and remember where I came from, reconnect with my family and what life was like before moving away and being swept deeper into a robotic way of life.
I remember November by the food.
My mom eagerly pushing me into the kitchen to look at her newest creation,
Reminding me that Thanksgiving is near approaching, and we need a perfect menu.
Pumpkin cranberry bread, sweet potato pie, scalloped potatoes, turducken,
Every stereotypical fall flavor or dish I’ve consumed,
Make these fall stereotypes something to embrace, however annoying they may be,
Because what matters most is the people who surround me as we stuff our bellies with every pumpkin-cranberry-chestnut-squash combination dish.
Hearty laughter, petty fights and holiday movies from our childhood in the background all make November a time to look forward to,
For the gathering is far more important than the aesthetics of the month.
But when gathering is risky, what can we do but reflect on the times we’ve had in the past and foster hope that we can make more warmth-giving memories in the future?