Robert Bridges

(1844-1930 / England)

Winter Nightfall


THE day begins to droop,--
   Its course is done:
But nothing tells the place
   Of the setting sun.

The hazy darkness deepens,
   And up the lane
You may hear, but cannot see,
   The homing wain.

An engine pants and hums
   In the farm hard by:
Its lowering smoke is lost
   In the lowering sky.

The soaking branches drip,
   And all night through
The dropping will not cease
   In the avenue.

A tall man there in the house
   Must keep his chair:
He knows he will never again
   Breathe the spring air:

His heart is worn with work;
   He is giddy and sick
If he rise to go as far
   As the nearest rick:

He thinks of his morn of life,
   His hale, strong years;
And braves as he may the night
   Of darkness and tears.

Submitted: Saturday, January 04, 2003

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