Please explain the poem "October" by Robert Frost.

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accessteacher's profile pic

accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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This is an excellent poem that captures the moment between the end of fall or autumn and the beginning of winter. The poem begins with an apostrophe, as the speaker addresses the "hushed October morning mild" and implores it to not go too fast as it wants this moment of natural beauty and tranquility to last for longer before winter comes with its cold and snow. We are at a crucial moment when the characteristics that we normally associate with fall are about to pass:

O hushed October morning mild, 
Thy leaves have ripened to the fall; 
To-morrow's wind, if it be wild, 
Should waste them all.

The leaves have all "ripened" and they are ready to fall from their trees if the wind is strong enough. Because of this, the speaker asks to be "beguiled" by October, or deceived, into thinking that this day and this period of the seasons will last longer than he actually knows he will. He implores October to be slower and to not speed up so that he can enjoy this enchanted moment.

Retard the sun with gentle mist; 
Enchant the land with amethyst. 
Slow, slow!

The poem ends with a final plea. Slowing down the passing of the seasons and preventing winter from arriving for just a little while longer will ensure the survival of the grapes, whose leaves have already been "burnt" with frost.

suratpyari's profile pic

suratpyari | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

The following lines need further detailed explations; The crows above the forest call; Tomorrow they may form and go. O hushed October morning mild, Begin the hours of this day slow. Make the day seem to us less brief. Hearts not averse to being beguiled, Beguile us in the way you know. Release one leaf at break of day; At noon release another leaf; One from our trees, one far away.

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