Sunday, December 19, 2010

Autumn's Ending

Geerhardus Vos, Western Rhymes:


What joy was ours on seeing the glorious riot
Of Indian Summer’s surge the forest overwhelm,
That, from the vision drunk, we asked in wonder, why not
The year wears all around her orange-yellow of din
Or wine-red maple robe, protesting she should die not,
A Queen bedecked with all the jewels of the realm.
Alas, we sobered soon; just at the splendor’s highest
It seemed to outblaze itself, and burst into a flame,
Which, by its own breeze fanned, leaped from the nighest
Unto the farthest crowns, consuming where it came
The body as through the garb. Ah Autumn, when thou diest,
’T is in a passion-fire, counts life and death the same.
Thy regal staging scarcely one brief month outlasted;
Bare stand and bleak the trees whereon the glories hung;
Earth’s face is shrunk and drawn, like to a nun’s who fasted
Both flesh and strength away; not even a sad song sung,
Sound-frozen lies the air, and all the buds are blasted,
That, trusting thy warm smile, to second youth had sprung.

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