August 5, 2011
IN flickering light and shade the broad stream goes,
With cool, dark nooks and checkered, rippling shallows;
Through reedy ferns its sluggish current flows,
Where lilies grow and purple-blossomed mallows.
The aster-blooms above its eddies shine,
With pollened bees about them humming slowly,
And in the meadow-lands the drowsy kine
Make music with their sweet bells, tinkling lowly.
The shrill cicala, on the hillside tree,
Sounds to its mate a note of love or warning;
And turtle-doves re-echo, plaintively,
From upland fields, a soft, melodious mourning.
A golden haze conceals the horizon,
A golden sunshine slants across the meadows;
The pride and prime of summertime is gone,
But beauty lingers in these autumn shadows.
The wild hawk’s shadow fleets across the grass,
Its softened gray the softened green outvying;
And fair scenes fairer grow while yet they pass,
As breezes freshen when the day is dying.
O sweet September! thy first breezes bring
The dry leaf’s rustle and the squirrel’s laughter,
The cool, fresh air, whence health and vigor spring,
And promise of exceeding joy hereafter.