He walked by me with open eyes,
And wondered that I loved it so;
Above us stretched the gray, gray skies;
Behind us, footprints on the snow.
The unforgetful April stars
Above the wood in legions rise;
A little lingering while they drift
Across the quiet middle skies,
Until at last their slow gleam fades
Between the snowdrifts and the sea,
Seeking, at last shall I find thee?
O friend of half-forgotten days,
Are these indeed the very ways
Thou tookest when thou wentst from me?
O Earth, O Mother, thou hast earned our praise!
The long year through thou hast been good to us!
Forgive us were we ever mutinous
Or unbelieving in thy strange, sure ways.
Sometimes, alas, we watched with wild amaze
And why shouldst thou come back to us, July,
Who vanished while we prayed thee not to pass?
Where are thy sunflowers? Where thine uncut grass?
Thy still, blue waters and thy cloudless sky?
October’s peace hath fallen on everything.
In the far west, above the pine-crowned hill,
With red and purple yet the heavens thrill―
The passing of the sun remembering.
Last night the heavy moaning wind
Bore unto me
Warning from Him who hath designed
That change shall be.
I wonder why my love for him
Should grow so much these last three days,
While he but stares as if some whim
Had been discovered to his gaze;
The low, gray sky curveth from hill to hill,
Silent and all untenanted;
From the trees also all glad sound hath fled,
Save for the little wind that moaneth still