Cicely Fox Smith

(1 February 1882 – 8 April 1954 / Lymm, Cheshire)

Ghosts In The Garden - Poem by Cicely Fox Smith

It needs not in the owl-light grey
Hither to creep with mystic rune,
Nor yet in shuddering stealth to pay
Lip-service to the freakish moon.
Here is no spell to sing or say;
Ghosts in the garden walk by day.

Where spreads its wide and plumy wings
The stormy sunset's weeping gold,
To those lone walks their presence clings,
Their footsteps stir the last year's mould
Whose vapour, faint like incense, brings
The fragrance of forgotten Springs.

It may be, nought is seen or heard
Save sights and sounds that well may be
But passing of a vagrant bird,
But shadow of a shaken tree:
By presence seen, or spoken word,
The haunted stillness is not stirred.

Yet o'er the leaf-drift wet and brown,
E'en now, some lingering footfall past,
And where yon late-blown rose's crown
On Summer's forehead clung the last,
The waft of some dead lady's gown
Brought the sweet ruin shattering down.

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Poem Submitted: Monday, August 30, 2010

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