Francis Duggan


A Wintery Autumn Day In Ireland


The water flow the colour of brown mud
And fields along the river deep in flood
And it's been raining hard since yesterday
And hungry cattle bellowing for hay.

The farmer looking through the window pane
Turns to his wife 'twill never stop the rain'
We have not got three weeks of sun this year
And the cattle hungry and Winter still not here.

Six months at least before first breath of Spring
Before the dunnock in the hedgerow sing
Six months of snow and frost and hail and rain
Before the swallow will return again.

The hill already wears a cap of snow
And grass growth ended weeks and weeks ago
And yet the redwing not been seen around
They have not yet returned to wintering ground.

The oak still wear most of her summer green
Though through her cloak some brown can now be seen
And it will be five weeks maybe even more
Before the last leaf reach the woodland floor.

Six months at least before first breath of spring
Before the dunnock in the hedgerow sing,
Six months of snow and frost and hail and rain
Before the swallow will return again.

Submitted: Wednesday, February 27, 2008

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