Thomas Hood

(1789-1845 / London / England)


Poem by Thomas Hood

I Saw old Autumn in the misty morn
Stand shadowless like Silence, listening
To silence, for no lonely bird would sing
Into his hollow ear from woods forlorn,
Nor lowly hedge nor solitary thorn;—
Shaking his languid locks all dewy bright
With tangled gossamer that fell by night,
Pearling his coronet of golden corn.

Where are the songs of Summer?—With the sun,
Oping the dusky eyelids of the south,
Till shade and silence waken up as one,
And Morning sings with a warm odorous mouth.
Where are the merry birds?—Away, away,
On panting wings through the inclement skies,
Lest owls should prey
Undazzled at noonday,
And tear with horny beak their lustrous eyes.

Where are the blooms of Summer?—In the west,
Blushing their last to the last sunny hours,
When the mild Eve by sudden Night is prest
Like tearful Proserpine, snatch'd from her flow'rs
To a most gloomy breast.
Where is the pride of Summer,—the green prime,—
The many, many leaves all twinkling?—Three
On the moss'd elm; three on the naked lime
Trembling,—and one upon the old oak-tree!
Where is the Dryad's immortality?—
Gone into mournful cypress and dark yew,
Or wearing the long gloomy Winter through
In the smooth holly's green eternity.

The squirrel gloats on his accomplish'd hoard,
The ants have brimm'd their garners with ripe grain,
And honey bees have stored
The sweets of Summer in their luscious cells;
The swallows all have wing'd across the main;
But here the Autumn melancholy dwells,
And sighs her tearful spells
Amongst the sunless shadows of the plain.
Alone, alone,
Upon a mossy stone,
She sits and reckons up the dead and gone
With the last leaves for a love-rosary,
Whilst all the wither'd world looks drearily,
Like a dim picture of the drownèd past
In the hush'd mind's mysterious far away,
Doubtful what ghostly thing will steal the last
Into that distance, gray upon the gray.

O go and sit with her, and be o'ershaded
Under the languid downfall of her hair:
She wears a coronal of flowers faded
Upon her forehead, and a face of care;—
There is enough of wither'd everywhere
To make her bower,—and enough of gloom;
There is enough of sadness to invite,
If only for the rose that died, whose doom
Is Beauty's,—she that with the living bloom
Of conscious cheeks most beautifies the light:
There is enough of sorrowing, and quite
Enough of bitter fruits the earth doth bear,—
Enough of chilly droppings for her bowl;
Enough of fear and shadowy despair,
To frame her cloudy prison for the soul!

Comments about Autumn by Thomas Hood

  • TO long (5/31/2018 10:44:00 AM)

    TO long
    for me to read so nope not reading(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • Abhisek BandopadhyayAbhisek Bandopadhyay (10/14/2017 7:50:00 AM)

    Probably the most beautifully penned piece I've read in a while. Thank you for sharing(Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
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  • James MclainJames Mclain (10/13/2017 5:35:00 PM)

    Genuis like this
    Generally have for some unexplained reason
    Short life spans.
    Or do they grow bored and leave what they take
    Early on.. iip.. James(Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
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  • Subhas Chandra ChakraSubhas Chandra Chakra (10/13/2017 11:18:00 AM)

    A great write by the poet, furnished so well.(Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Glen KappyGlen Kappy (10/13/2017 7:33:00 AM)

    This is a panoramic view of autumn. Something I noticed, though, is that the poem begins referring to autumn with the prnoun his and ends by referring to it as her and she. - GK(Report)Reply

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  • Kumarmani MahakulKumarmani Mahakul (10/13/2017 12:41:00 AM)

    In silence in magical mood seeing autumn at misty morning and feeling essence is great perspective. On panting wings through the inclement skies birds chirp with love and hope. Sorrows go far and light gives joy. An excellent imagery of autumn is greatly painted here from deep perception. ..10(Report)Reply

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  • Bernard F. AsuncionBernard F. Asuncion (10/13/2017 12:33:00 AM)

    Such a great poem by Thomas Hood......(Report)Reply

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    0 person did not like.
  • M Asim NehalM Asim Nehal (12/20/2016 8:34:00 AM)

    Great imagery of a wonderful season.....thanks for sharing.(Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
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Read poems about / on: summer, autumn, silence, green, despair, alone, lonely, pride, winter, rose, tree, hair, beauty, fear, night, dark, sun, light, flower, sky

Poem Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002