Thankful November

Thankful November – The Partridge

Collage of 2021 photos

With him the woodland wonders come:

Their beauties in his flight depart;
Or like music fading sweet
They linger in the listening heart;
For all that wanders and is wild,
With faerie charms remote and dim,
Luring like rich autumnal lights,
Seems gathered to the soul of him.

By the lost wood he brings a soul;
A spirit to the glen he gives;
The silent and forsaken hill
To sudden rapture wakes and lives
As off he speeds upon those wings
That deftly thread the thicket’s way;
Or does he merely cross the road?
The day becomes a magic day!
Of mountain-silence he’s the tone,
The voice of hushed, seraphic places;
The meaning of loneliness
That glimmers forth the forest’s graces;
The haunting scenes of mountains grand,
The radiant peace of wonder-woods,
The mystery and marvel old
Abiding in the solitudes.

The hill crest pines have runes of sleep;
The bawling brook has urgent speech;
The ocean’s old unrest is loud
In ruling anthems of the beach.
But in this bird the wildwood sings
The only lyric to impart
A sense of all the silentness
And music of sweet nature’s heart.

—Archibald Rutledge

Today’s Thankful November Giveaway is a copy of “Bird Dog Days Wingshooting Ways Archibald Rutledge’s Tales Of Upland Hunting” Edited with a New Introduction by Jim Casada.

Leave a comment on this post to be entered. *Giveaway ends November 23, 2021.

The book is full of Rutledge’s stories of deer hunting, turkey hunting, and Carolina Christmas Hunts and traditions. My favorite part is a story about a fierce dog name Bolio. When reading it I was reminded of the hunting dogs my Papaw Wade had and loved.

To pick up your own copy of the book jump over to Jim’s website here.

Last night’s video: Appalachian Words and Phrases that Start with the Letter i.


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  • Reply
    November 22, 2021 at 9:54 pm

    As a fan of Archibald Rutledge poetry & stories since the age of 17 I would appreciate having this book.

  • Reply
    November 19, 2021 at 9:35 pm

    I would enjoy reading this book.

  • Reply
    November 19, 2021 at 7:24 pm

    Some fellows in our area claim to have killed a black bear weighing 570 lbs. I did not see it but I don’t remember seeing one over 250 lbs. when I was hunting. Maybe This book will have stories validating their tale.

    • Reply
      Sanford McKinney
      November 19, 2021 at 9:23 pm

      I do not know whether the 570 lbs. bear was killed or not, but something happened this morning as I was going to pick up a husband and his wife, who has dementia, in Blountville TN to go to breakfast in Elizabethton, TN As I was going up their long and wooded driveway, a big deer comes over the driveway just as if it was sailing. Its legs were culled up and if my eyes did not deceive me, I would swear that it was sailing higher than the roof of my automobile. Closest thing I ever saw to a “flying deer”!

  • Reply
    Barbara Parker
    November 19, 2021 at 5:17 pm

    I like this poem and all the comments. I won’t need to be entered in the drawing for this one since I was a blessed winner of the Doll Maker! Thank you for doing this for all of us. It is truly a meaningful gift to read your posts, see the pictures, hear the singing and music, along with all the other things you feature such as WORK, WORK, WORK!!! I’m so thankful that I can still work around and do the things I can do. God is Great!

  • Reply
    November 19, 2021 at 4:30 pm

    This brought me back to my childhood. When I went hunting with my dad. I am one proud daughter to have gotten to spend the precious time with him when he was here. I got to go hunting with my dad several times a week. It was so much fun.

  • Reply
    November 19, 2021 at 3:38 pm

    This sounds like another very interesting book, I like reading stories of yesteryear
    Please enter me in the drawing

  • Reply
    November 19, 2021 at 3:30 pm

    Lovely poem! It brought back to me a snapshot memory of a few times when I was a young mother. We lived in the Maryland countryside of Glen Arm… beautiful place! While slowly driving down the quiet country road, we would sometimes see a mama Partridge and her babies, obediently following her on the side of the road..such a pretty, sweet sight.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    November 19, 2021 at 2:30 pm

    Tipper–I’ll jump in to offer some insight on the matter of the partridge to which Old Flintlock (Rutledge’s nickname) refers. He is writing of grouse, a species with which he was familiar thanks to hunting them in two locales. Most of his grouse hunting was done in Pennsylvania, where he taught English at Mercersburg Academy for decades until his retirement, but he also hunted them some in the Flat Rock area of western North Carolina. Of course there were no grouse at Hampton Plantation, his beloved Low Country South Carolina home where he devoted most of the final three-plus decades of his life to restoring it to something of its one-time glory.

    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    Kathryn Barragan
    November 19, 2021 at 1:47 pm

    I THOROUGHLY enjoyed reading about Dorie Woman of the Mountains. It is the way that Appalachian people or “mountain folk” lived way back when that has all ways fascinated me and was responsible for drawing me to your blog. They were strong hardworking people who made do with what often the little they had. I have learned much about the manner in which they adapted and provided for themselves and their fierce pride and determination. I am literally in awe of them.
    I enjoy reading what you have to stay. The stories, music, and recipes. It makes me feel as if I’ve come home although I’ve never had the privilege of visiting and taking in the beauty of the place you call home.
    I hope I win the copy of this book. I would cherish it.
    Thank you for all you do.

  • Reply
    Jenny Young
    November 19, 2021 at 1:15 pm

    I would love to read this book.

  • Reply
    Ben Wooded
    November 19, 2021 at 12:56 pm

    Sounds like another enjoyable book. Thank you for your generosity, Tipper.

  • Reply
    Sandra Henderson
    November 19, 2021 at 12:02 pm

    I use to live way out on greasy branch by lake Fontana at the end of a road, up on top of a mtn where you could see clingmans dome and way off in many directions…the hunters would come and I’d hear their dogs in the woods there all night long. I’d see a straggler from the night on the way to town, tired and hungry. They’d give up, I suppose that night and come back to find them the next day. Lol. One time I stopped and fed one. Hunting is a big part of these parts.
    I’d love to read this book.

  • Reply
    Oliver Holder
    November 19, 2021 at 9:40 am

    Would like to have something to read that is not confrontational.

  • Reply
    Lori Hughes
    November 19, 2021 at 9:35 am

    That was a beautiful poem. Thank you Tipper

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    November 19, 2021 at 8:53 am

    I have to think Mr. Rutledge was writing about the ruffed grouse of the mountains and not the bobwhite quail of the piney woods as hecrefers to mountains twice. We always just called them grouse but I think in some parts they are called ‘partridge’/ But then so are bobwhite quail!

    Your heart will speed up if a grouse rockets out of a thicket close by you. The sudden explosion of sound always startles even when you know there is a grouse somewhere about. It is a thrill in more ways than one. As Rutledge writes, grouse are an ‘interior forest species’. But as habitat they like young forrst, just not close to civilization.

    • Reply
      November 19, 2021 at 12:57 pm

      Ron, I was blessed to hunt grouse in the rugged hill country and gorges of E.KY. with my Dad for over 40 years. We often took grouse home for mom to cook. Good eatin! My papaw Lewis always called them patridge.

  • Reply
    November 19, 2021 at 8:37 am

    Sorry about the mistakes in my post I got distracted.

  • Reply
    November 19, 2021 at 8:34 am

    I have read a lot of stories by Aechibald Rutledge, in this poem I think he is referring to the ruffed grouse . Before moving to the low country of South Carolina he lived up north where the grouse was common. I dearly loved bird hunting meaning the bobwhite quail. I have read and heard the older hunters refer to both the ruff grouse and bobwhite quail as a partridge. As Nancy wrote, the joy for me did not coming from killing but from being with my dogs and watching them work. Now in upstate SC the bobwhite is almost nonexistent and even the rabbits numbers are low, now it is all about deer and turkey hunting, I know

    In the past when I hunted I would be so excited at this of the year I could hardly stand it, quail and rabbit hunting seasons opened on Thanksgiving Day.

  • Reply
    Al Shew
    November 19, 2021 at 8:28 am

    He speaks of the honored Bob White. Maybe the only hunting pursuit where the three parties (man, dog, and game) each ,in their own way, honors the other. If you are marinated in quail hunting, you begin to devine this trinity. No one shared it better than Mr. Rutledge.

  • Reply
    Larry Paul Eddings
    November 19, 2021 at 8:11 am

    Watching a good bird dog work is a wonder to behold. To see their natural, God-given instincts on display makes upland bird hunting something very special.

  • Reply
    Colleen Holmes
    November 19, 2021 at 7:49 am

    My wall is pasted with bird dog pictures. Reminds me of my daddy hunting when I was young. Enjoyed the reading. Thanks

  • Reply
    Tim Harper
    November 19, 2021 at 7:41 am

    As an avid upland hunter and lover of bird dogs I love anything written by Archibald Rutledge.

  • Reply
    Kathy Gautier
    November 19, 2021 at 7:13 am

    Such a beautiful passage. I am really enjoying Jim’s work since being introduced by you, Tipper. I appreciate you and would enjoy reading more from Jim. (And you, too Tipper!) Have a wonderful day.

  • Reply
    Nancy Johnson
    November 19, 2021 at 6:53 am

    This is where our small world of nature and yours truly meet. My husband has had English Setters for well over 50 years. They are the best excuse for spending many hours in the woods. I have gone too many, many times. To me in particular it’s about being in nature and about watching the dog hunting. I truly do not care if Del gets a bird (grouse or woodcock)! It’s about the woods and the dog. Or it’s about watching in awe as “our” owl takes a bath in our backyard pond system that came with our house. Or watching a bald Eagle soar by our kitchen window so close that I could easily see each feather. That was a magical day.

  • Reply
    Martha D Justice
    November 19, 2021 at 6:46 am

    I would love to have this book to read it to my great grandchildren. Thank you for the beautiful poem.

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