Jasper’s Song

Rating: 2.8

WHO goes down through the slim green sallows,
Soon, so soon ?
Dawn is hard on the heels of the moon,
But never a lily the day-star knows
Is white, so white as the one who goes
Armed and shod, when the hyacinths darken.
Then hark, O harken !
And rouse the moths from the deep rose-mallows,
Call the wild hares down from the fallows,
Gather the silk of the young sea-poppies,
The bloom of the thistle, the bells of the foam;
Bind them all with a brown owl's feather,
Snare the winds in a golden tether,
Chase the clouds from the gipsy's weather, and follow, O follow, the white spring home.
Who goes past with the wind that chilled us,
Late, so late ?
Fortune leans on the farmer's gate,
Watching the round sun low in the south,

With a plume in his cap and a rose at his mouth.
But O, for the folk who were free and merry
There's never so much as a red rose-berry.
But old earth's warm as the wine that filled us,
And the fox and the little gray mouse skull build us
Walls of the sweet green gloom of the cedar,
A roof of bracken, a curtain of whin;
One more rouse ere the bowl reposes
Low in the dust of our lost red roses,
One more song ere the cold night closes, and welcome, O welcome the dark death in !

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