A Latter-day Bluestocking

For the love of reading

Category: Poetry

Quote of the Day: Alfred Lord Tennyson

Alfred Tennyson

Smiles from the threshold of the year to come,
Whispering ‘it will be happier’…

Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1809–1892

Autumn is Here!

John Keats, by William Hilton (died 1839). See...

Image via Wikipedia

As the air gets chillier, the days shorter, and the memory of summer begin to gather in a miasma I often find myself reflecting on more light-hearted times as I physically and mentally prepare for the short, cold days of winter.  Often melancholia sets in as the leaves begin to turn and finally fall; a reminder that all care-free delights must end.  But even as the earth prepares itself to sleep there is a sense of  promise, an assurance of future renewal.  Since I, myself, lack the talent to capture the essence of what autumn means to me I offer an ode from my favorite poet of the Romantic period, John Keats.

 To Autumn
John Keats, 1795–1821

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer had o’er-brimm’d their clammy shells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind:
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring?  Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,-
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

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