Katherine Mansfield

(14 October 1888 – 9 January 1923 / Wellington)

Spring Wind in London


I Blow across the stagnant world,
I blow across the sea,
For me, the sailor's flag unfurled,
For me, the uprooted tree.
My challenge to the world is hurled;
The world must bow to me.

I drive the clouds across the sky,
I huddle them like sheep;
Merciless shepherd-dog am I
And shepherd-watch I keep.
If in the quiet vales they lie
I blow them up the steep.

Lo! In the tree-tops do I hide,
In every living thing;
On the moon's yellow wings I glide,
On the wild rose I swing;
On the sea-horse's back I ride,
And what then do I bring?

And when a little child is ill
I pause, and with my hand
I wave the window curtain's frill
That he may understand
Outside the wind is blowing still;
...It is a pleasant land.

O stranger in a foreign place,
See what I bring to you.
This rain--is tears upon your face;
I tell you--tell you true
I came from that forgotten place
Where once the wattle grew,--

All the wild sweetness of the flower
Tangled against the wall.
It was that magic, silent hour....
The branches grew so tall
They twined themselves into a bower.
The sun shown... and the fall

Of yellow blossom on the grass!
You feel that golden rain?
Both of you could not hold, alas,
(both of you tried, in vain)
A memory, stranger. So I pass....
It will not come again

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

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