A nut drops down,
A cricket sings,
A spray grows brown,
A pair of wings
Turns South, is gone;
Where boulders sit,
The mullein’s wan
Gray torch is lit.
Among the sedge
Dry fern-fronds curl;
At the brook’s edge,
A gentian’s whorl
Unfolds fresh blue.
So, far and near,
The autumn’s true
Clear signs appear.
All round the woods, pine needles lie,
And now I’ve guessed the reason why:
Dame Winter uses them to sew
Her long white even sheets of snow.
THE BEAUTY OF GOODNESS
I walked in woods of purest gold,
through withered grasses, crisp with cold,
Where leaves were floating, swirling slow
To drifts of gold that lay below.
I saw white berries hanging down,
A ring of mushrooms, red and brown,
A crow, hard black against the sky,
A crested bluejay swinging high.
There are no words, that I can say
What thoughts were mine upon that day;
Of beauty, goodness manifest,
And goodness which makes beauty blest.
No words have I; the tale is told.
I walked in woods of purest gold.
Written for the Christian Science Monitor.
Now is the time when bonfires blaze
At dusk, along the village street,
And smoke blends bluely with the haze
That sinks when day and evening meet.
And here and there a sudden fling
Of flame leaps up, a fathom high,
And sparks, like fountains gushing, spring
And spangle all the starless sky.