Oliver Wendell Holmes
The September Gale
I'M not a chicken; I have seen
Full many a chill September,
And though I was a youngster then,
That gale I well remember;
The day before, my kite-string snapped,
And I, my kite pursuing,
The wind whisked off my palm-leaf hat;
For me two storms were brewing!
It came as quarrels sometimes do,
When married folks get clashing;
There was a heavy sigh or two,
Before the fire was flashing,
A little stir among the clouds,
Before they rent asunder,--
A little rocking of the trees,
And then came on the thunder.
Lord! how the ponds and rivers boiled!
They seemed like bursting craters!
And oaks lay scattered on the ground
As if they were p'taters
And all above was in a howl,
And all below a clatter,
The earth was like a frying-pan,
Or some such hissing matter.
It chanced to be our washing-day,
And all our things were drying;
The storm came roaring through the lines,
And set them all a flying;
I saw the shirts and petticoats
Go riding off like witches;
I lost, ah! bitterly I wept,--
I lost my Sunday breeches!
I saw them straddling through the air,
Alas! too late to win them;
I saw them chase the clouds, as if
The devil had been in them;
They were my darlings and my pride,
My boyhood's only riches,--
"Farewell, farewell," I faintly cried,--
"My breeches! O my breeches!"
That night I saw them in my dreams,
How changed from what I knew them!
The dews had steeped their faded threads,
The winds had whistled through them!
I saw the wide and ghastly rents
Where demon claws had torn them;
A hole was in their amplest part,
As if an imp had worn them.
I have had many happy years,
And tailors kind and clever,
But those young pantaloons have gone
Forever and forever!
And not till fate has cut the last
Of all my earthly stitches,
This aching heart shall cease to mourn
My loved, my long-lost breeches!
Oliver Wendell Holmes's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (The September Gale by Oliver Wendell Holmes )
(1644 - 1694)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
Elinor Morton Wylie
(7 September 1885 – 16 December 1928)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(30 December 1865 – 18 January 1936)
- The Saddest Poem, Pablo Neruda
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- Invictus, William Ernest Henley
- Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
- Warning, Jenny Joseph
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe
- And Death Shall Have No Dominion, Dylan Thomas
Poem of the Day
- Sentiments And Wilful Desires, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- alright fine, i'll go crazy again, Mandolyn ...
- Pictures Of Fame, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Vaders gaan niet dood, Madrason writer
- Desires Finding Their Places, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Joyful Sounds, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- Last Horizon, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- i want to weigh the moon with you, Mandolyn ...
- Italian Birthday Poem, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
- God's Most Published Poet, Tom Zart