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Carl Sandburg Talks About Sleep Insomnia and Natural Remedies

Updated on November 1, 2014
Wikipedia uploaded by Roadcrusher
Wikipedia uploaded by Roadcrusher | Source

Sleep Impression

The dark blue wind of early autumn

ran on the early autumn sky

in the fields of yellow moon harvest.

. . . . I slept, I almost slept,

. . . . I said listening:

Trees you have leaves rustling like rain

When there is no rain.

Original Photo Debby Bruck
Original Photo Debby Bruck
The full moon that occurs nearest the autumnal equinox.
The full moon that occurs nearest the autumnal equinox. | Source
Original Photo Debby Bruck
Original Photo Debby Bruck

The Setting and Season

What impressions and metaphors do we receive upon this first reading?

Carl Sandburg simplifies as a minimalist, so we are left with personal impressions from our own experience of the season and intimate sleep patterns.

Are we affected by the moon's cycles?

The autumn season with colors fading, changing from deep summer greens to golden hues of yellow, burnt umber, bittersweet oranges and crimson reds reminds us the world prepares for bed.

The time when the world sleeps and hibernates has not yet reached its nadir of winter.

We look upward at the clouds moving in the sky, at the shades of blue and white and the restless movement of the winds with rustling sounds.

The trees sway back and forth in anticipation as the birds twitter and flit building their nests for safekeeping to keep their nestlings warm.

We cannot help but observe the circle in the sky showing in all its splendor and glory.

The yellow orange harvest moon fills the evening sky.

Does this night light keep us awake?

We stand in awe before it, as it rises from the horizon or sinks down below the earth's curvature.

Observing the wonder of nature, perhaps bedded down in the field under the stars.

Thinking about the world and man's place still trying to sleep.

The mind goes on and on turning until it recognizes the wake sleep state.

Self talk, we wonder and realize slumber has not yet overtaken, instead the sounds of nature keenly heard tell us the world has not quieted just yet.

Still awake, wanting to rest, waiting, waiting for the time of peace.

Receiving messages from the trees as the rustling leaves signal the winds movement, all is not quiet.

We wait for heaven to open and relieve the parched earth to nourish the dryness of autumn.

All the signals seen, the change in sky's color, the wind blowing, the heaviness in the air.

If rain comes the pitter patter will lull us to sleep.

Waiting. Waiting. Almost asleep. Not yet.


Something to think about.

In my previous commentary of Carl Sandburg's poems about love he used the sea and the wind as metaphors. Why do you think he used the trees to talk about sleep? What is it about the sounds we hear at night?

Carl Sandburg grew up in an Illinois home with six siblings. Their 3-room cottage had a wooded park nearby. After the eighth grade he left school, traveling and working in a variety of jobs. His life as a 'hobo' must have entailed sleeping under the open night's sky.

Charlie, as they called him, volunteered to serve in the Spanish-American War of 1898 at the age of 20 and was stationed in Puerto Rico.

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Passiflora flower for sleep
Passiflora flower for sleep

Listen To The Wind Meditation Seasonal Guided Imagery
Listen to a late night meditation inspired by the sounds of the wind moving the leaves on the trees.

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804 Homeopathic Sleep Remedies listed for sleeplessness in the repertory


Out of sleeplessness in the mind category, which means I suppose that it is not the body that is sleepless, but something keeps the mind awake, there are a number of major remedies out of the total 212 listed: Acon, Ars, Bell, Calc, Caps, Cham, Chin, Cimic, Cocc, Coff, Cupr, Hep, Hyos, Lact, Merc, Nux0v, Op, Puls, Rhus-t, Verat

Reasons for Insomnia

The number of reasons for inability probably number as many people that feel this way. The myriad of emotions from joy, homesickness, delirium to excitement or hysteria can contribute to this problem. We have worries, cares, fears, complaints, anxiety and more.

Anxiety and Sleep

One of interest is sleeplessness with anxiety that drives a person out of bed after midnight. You can see how specific the rubrics become using the individualized medicines in homeopathy. For those interested, the remedy listed is arsenic album as the major remedy out of 41 others.

Is that new baby keeping you awake?
Is that new baby keeping you awake? | Source
Parched. Need to hydrate with water? You may have to wake up to relieve yourself if you drink before bedtime.
Parched. Need to hydrate with water? You may have to wake up to relieve yourself if you drink before bedtime. | Source
Sleeplessness Homeopathic Rubric
Sleeplessness Homeopathic Rubric

What do you automatically do?

What if sitting up in bed ameliorates the anxiety? Then we have carbo-veg, causticum, fraxinus and spongier.

Thus, we learn body posture and position plays an important role in how we feel. We call these modalities when a person finds particular ways to ameliorate and improve their discomforts. Position is only one factor, foods, weather, temperature, rubbing, talking and many other ways that people find to soothe their pains.

Just can't fall asleep

If a person has problems simply falling asleep, then out of 167 remedies these are the top one listed: Aconite, calc-carb, carb-veg, caust, cench, cob-n, haliae-lc, hep, lach, lil-s, lyc, merc, nat-mur, plb-acet, puls, quasi and rhus-tox

Top Sleep Remedies Emerge

Even I am beginning to see a pattern form where aconite, calcarea and rhus-tox are frequently listed for the problem of sleep. Always remember that the homeopathic remedy will only be effective if it matches the energy of the individual. Thus, a formula medicine with all of these remedies may not solve the problem.

Sixty-eight remedies are listed for anxiety which disturbs a person's sleep, but only three for sleep interrupted from anxiety with arsenic, cocculus and veratrum album.

What about pain?

Of course, besides mind symptoms like grief and anguish, a person may have serious physical symptoms contributing to inability to sleep. Any type of pain makes it difficult if not impossible to get rest and sleep. While, for others, sleep may be the only time that the daily pains subside.

Hundreds upon hundreds of pages fill the homeopathic literature which concerns sleep and its manifestations.

Learn more about homeopathy and insomnia

Related Health Notes

Sleep Apnea related to cancer | people with sleep apnea, a common disorder that causes snoring, fatigue and dangerous pauses in breathing at night, have a higher risk of cancer.

What do you do to prevent snoring? Question Answer on Hubpages.

Calming nerves and helping sleep with natural herbs

Lavender | Research indicates anti-inflammatory, analgesic properties useful in cases of arthritis, rheumatism, muscular aches, pains and sports injuries. Calming, relaxing properties soothe stress, used in the evening bath or on the pillow will help to induce sleep.

Chamomile | Just like Peter Rabbit, chamomile's sedative properties are often taken as a tea, but should not be used continuously to reduce its dependency and for potential side effects or irritability and upset tummy. Chamomile essence may be put in a soothing bathtub or rub on the skin as an oil.

Passion Flower | When worry, overwork, or nervous exhaustion contribute to insomnia then passion flower may assist sleep.


A specific for palpitations and difficulty falling asleep in homeopathic potency when all symptoms match the individual. Ginkgo, oldest living tree species, each tree may live 1000 years.
A specific for palpitations and difficulty falling asleep in homeopathic potency when all symptoms match the individual. Ginkgo, oldest living tree species, each tree may live 1000 years. | Source

All rights reserved, © copyright Debby Bruck 2012

Carl Sandburg writes a simple poem about sleep difficulty using nature's metaphors. What natural remedies can be used to help us fall asleep?

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About the Author

Debby Bruck, CHOM founded Homeopathy World Community social network. Debby believes that homeopathy is the wave of the future that provides hope and healing to those who have tried every other approach. Follow Debby on Twitter.

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Thank you for your comments and contributions to this blog

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    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      5 years ago

      Hi Vespa - You can probably use traditional means of preparing nighttime routine, darkened room, lavender scents, passion flower essences, warm milk and the like and meditation before bed since this is not a chronic problem.

      However, learning about homeopathy can always expand your scope of knowledge. Blessings, Debby

    • vespawoolf profile image


      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      This is a fascinating study of insomnia. There's a lot of information here--I'll have to read this over again and think about it before I reach a verdict! Actually, my husband and I can't complain much about sleep. Both of us fall asleep easily, but when under a lot of stress I don't feel well rested when I wake up in the morning. I take melatonin at times but now will consider the possibility of a homeopathic remedy. (although it is very difficult to diagnose oneself!) Thanks again.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Hello Rajan - It's right about past bedtime now. It sounds like you have no problem sleeping. Wonder why you selected this Hub out of all the others to read? Blessings, Debby

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 

      6 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Fine and useful hub. I try to change the sleep position and manage to sleep. But mostly I hit the sack right upon lying down. Useful remedies and a wonderful poem, Debby.

      Voted up.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Hello Healthy Life ~ Let me know if the lavender and tea help you. Creating a night routine may also help. blessings, Debby

    • healthylife2 profile image

      Healthy Life 

      6 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      Great hub and I like that you included the poem. I can relate because I have a difficult time staying asleep. I will try the lavender on the pillow and chamomile tea. Voted up!

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Ron - Do enjoy your free time. Thoughtful of you to send a note. Blessings, Debby

    • zzron profile image


      6 years ago from Houston, TX.

      Hi Debby, I'm on my time off at home for a week so I may not be on HubPages a lot this week so hope you are having a a good week! Talk to you later.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Hello Chip ~ Honored that you have found your way to this information. My hubs evolved out of my own creative and inquisitive nature. I love the poetry and wanted to understand it as deeply as possible. Thus, my explanation of Carl Sandburg's words, a little background history, some personal experience and then solutions to this sleep problem. So glad you have no problem sleeping. Most likely you clicked the, "as soon as my head hits the pillow" answer in the poll above. Blessings to the fisherman! Debby

    • WD Curry 111 profile image

      WD Curry 111 

      6 years ago from Space Coast

      This hub was so cool! It kept unfolding. At first, I was wondering what was up with letting Carl Sandburg write the hub.

      "Are we affected by the moon's cycles?"

      Is a five pound robin fat?

      I am getting to know you better. I am on board with your homeopathic pathway.

      I have been a certified vocational instructor. The one who does an honest days work with the hands sleeps well.

      I rarely have trouble falling asleep. When I do, I know the fish are biting and I go catch a few.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Hello Sue ~ Does watching TV put you back to sleep? Reading hubs would probably get my mind thinking of what to write, instead of going back to sleep. What about you? Debby

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Hi Debby,

      When I can't sleep, I watch TV or read hubs.

      Voted up and awesome.

    • zzron profile image


      6 years ago from Houston, TX.

      Hi Debby yes I am fine thanks, hope you are well. Just trying to make some rounds on my favorite hubbers hubs. Getting ready to go to bed now though so I hope you have a wonderful evening and I'll talk to you again soon. Night night.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Hi Ron ~ Haven't communicated with you in a while. I hope you are back to work, feeling good and enjoying the winter. Blessings, Debby

    • zzron profile image


      6 years ago from Houston, TX.

      This was really awesome Debby!

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Dear Virtual ~ I love your avatar, the sunny mosaic plate. Again, when each of us have pushed to the limit of our coping mechanisms it shows up in our sleep patterns. And, if we can settle the kids down, helping get them acclimated to life's stresses, we can relax and sleep soundly. When we miss our sleep irritability, being snappish and impatient can be another indicator. Learning how each of us, individually respond, will help to find the best homeopathic remedy. Blessings, Debby

    • Virtual Treasures profile image

      Kacie Turner 

      6 years ago from Michigan

      My husband is having such a horrible time falling asleep and staying asleep because of problems we are having with his kids, which in turn, causes him to keep me up all night! Thank you for sharing this information. Losing out on sleep is horrible.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Hello SaleeIn ~ I suppose we all make an assumption when we see a person holding a baby. Most people used to comment that way on my Twitter account when I was holding my granddaughter. But, you see we still got the gist of the connection since you are family and snuggling together. So, if the problems concern worry, then there are homeopathic remedies dealing with nursing or caring for others, loss of sleep, and worry in the materia medica books, which cover all symptoms and provings of remedies. I'm glad to hear that writing soothes. Blessings, Debby

    • Saleeln18 profile image


      6 years ago from Illinois

      Thank you, and I also thank you for this hub, it's good to know that there are people to agree and connect with on subjects like these. And I also agree about the writing portion, I've just recently got into blogging but i think it is a very informative and productive outlet that really invites my passion for writing.

      But its funny you should say that, a lot of people think she is my daughter but she's actually my niece, she's my older brothers child we just all happen to live together so she recognizes me as much as her own parents. I love that little girl though I see so much of my brother in her. She smiles every time I pick her up and she always talks gibberish to me just like she does with her parents. But even still her crying does keep me up lol.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Dear SaleeIn ~ You have hit the nail on the head. When we find our personal stresses on the body and mind, and we take active steps to reduce those, then our sleep patterns will improve. If writing releases your worries, getting them out of the body and down on paper (or Hubpages) then your sleep will naturally improve. Of course, when that baby sleeps through the night, that also helps. Blessings to you and the little one, Debby

    • Saleeln18 profile image


      6 years ago from Illinois

      This is an interesting hub you've got here. I've suffered from insomnia since I was 8 or 9. It either weakens or intensifies depending on the circumstances and levels of stress I'm experiencing. I think my own personal remedy is all just a matter of having willpower, self understanding, and keeping a positive and productive mindset. I've just recently brought it down since I started diving back into writing, music and other things and now it seems I'm sleeping better than ever. I really think this hub will help anyone suffering from insomnia to find the cause and the solution to it.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Dear Nornie ~ Crude plant drugs manufactured to extract the supposedly most active ingredients are purported to act on circulation. That doesn't mean it actually works. In fact, drugs usually have many other side effects and that's why I personally steer clear of them and most supplements.

      However, homeopathic remedies work in tandem with the individual whose total symptom picture match the medicinal effects of the remedy - that includes ALL effects including what drug manufacturers would claim as "side-effects."

      If you did not find Ginkgo as a supplement helpful for circulation, that does not mean that homeopathically it would not be helpful if all symptoms match that remedy picture.

      I hope that helps in understanding why ginkgo is listed here. It was a very small remedy selection based upon 'heart palpitations' and 'insomnia.' Blessings and time for sleep. Debby

    • einron profile image


      6 years ago from Toronto, Ontario, CANADA

      Debby Bruck

      Ginkgo biloba does not help with my leg circulation, but is supposed to help with memory. Longan fruit helps both my leg cramps and palpitation. I have written a hub on longan.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Dear Raciniwa ~ Many thanks for warm hugs here. Blessings, Debby

    • raciniwa profile image


      6 years ago from Naga City, Cebu

      you have left a warm impression here Debby, and i sure want to take these tips with me...i voted up and awesome...great read...

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      What data base do you have? Sounds interesting. You know we have a bookmark option here on Hubpages.

    • cleaner3 profile image


      6 years ago from Pueblo, Colorado

      Thanks Debby,

      Great info, Will store in my data base.

    • rsusan profile image

      Rika Susan 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Thanks, Debby. This is interesting!

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Dear Susan ~ I just looked up heart palpitations with difficulty falling asleep and found that Ginkgo biloba typically used as a crude does supplement to treat blood disorders, memory loss, dementia, Alzheimer's disease, intermittent claudication, and poor leg circulation may be indicated as a homeopathic remedy. Learning something new every day. Blessings, Debby

    • rsusan profile image

      Rika Susan 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Yes, Debby, it can really help for a cold if used early enough. My dad has also used it for palpitations.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      Hi Susan ~ Thank you for your testimonial on homeopathy. Aconite is a major first rate emergency cold remedy, too. Blessings, Debby

    • rsusan profile image

      Rika Susan 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Good one, Debby. Both my mom and dad have used aconite with great success. Love the fact that these are so safe to use.

    • Debby Bruck profile imageAUTHOR

      Debby Bruck 

      6 years ago

      asmaiftikhar ~ Thank you for thinking of this as a guide.

      GoldenBird - Your interpretation adds depth to Sandburg's poetry reading. Each reading of his poems brings new thoughts.

      Poet - Most people are over stimulated today due to the technology, television, movies, videos, music and all social networking, dependence upon cell phones and internet.

      If we can find a way to disengage and do more meditations, it would improve our overall health, too.

      Please let me know how you are getting along. Remember that homeopathy is a fine art and science. It takes a professional to know what remedy will potentially work the best for each person.

      However, many self prescribers can find something that works. Good luck and blessings all

    • poetvix profile image


      6 years ago from Gone from Texas but still in the south. Surrounded by God's country.

      This is a blessing. I can't sleep most of the time. I just can't get the old noodle to shut up. I have to try some of this stuff. Thank you for the useful information. I tend to operate on four hours of sleep a night. It's just not enough. Finally, after a few weeks I will pass out on the weekend and sleep for 18 or 19 hours straight. It can't be healthy. Thank you so much!

    • GoldenBird profile image


      6 years ago

      This is beautiful. I think I have been a 'hobo' myself, a little while ago :-),

      So I absolutely support the poetry of Carl Sandburg! Friedrich Nietzsche once tried the profession of being a poet, but his philosophical genius drowned him.

      -"Trees you have leaves rustling like rain

      When there is no rain."

      I think the poet is speaking from the restlessness of his soul. A realization for some activity that he could not accomplish. This hub is stunning.

    • asmaiftikhar profile image


      6 years ago from Pakistan

      Thanks a lot Debby for this useful and informative hub.That is really a helpful guide for the insomniac sufferers. Thanks a lot.Voted up1


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