Alice Cary

(1820-1871 / USA)

October - Poem by Alice Cary

Not the light of the long blue Summer,
Nor the flowery huntress, Spring,
Nor the chilly and moaning Winter,
Doth peace to my bosom bring,
Like the hazy and red October,
When the woods stand bare and brown,
And into the lap of the south land,
The flowers are blowing down;
When all night long, in the moonlight,
The boughs of the roof-tree chafe,
And the wind, like a wandering poet,
Is singing a mournful waif;
And all day through the cloud-armies,
The sunbeams like sentinels move -
For then in my path first unfolded
The sweet passion-flower of love.

With bosom as pale as the sea-shell,
And soft as the flax unspun,
And locks like the nut-brown shadows
In the light of the sunken sun,
Came the maiden whose wonderful beauty
Enchanted my soul from pain,
And gladdened my heart, that can never,
No, never be happy again.
Away from life's pain and passion,
Away from the cares that blight,
She went like a star that softly
Goes out from the tent of night.
But oft, when the fields of the Autumn
Are warm with the summer beams,
We meet in the mystic shadows
That border the land of dreams.
For seeing my wo through the splendor
That hovers about her above,
She puts from her forehead the glory,
And listens again to my love.

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Poem Submitted: Friday, April 11, 2014

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