Katharine Lee Bates

(1859-1929 / United States)

Not Yet - Poem by Katharine Lee Bates

NOT yet hath Nature, lovely colorist,
Bestirred her from creative dream to fling
Soft flame upon the woods, —nay, not to dip
One pleading maple-tip
In carmine; all the waiting world is whist,
Alert to hear the first faint flutes of spring.
Not yet the tingling flood of blue and gold
Is poured through heaven, but o'er the misty pond,
Quiet as patterned silk, flushed saplings lean;
And the auspicious green
Through the deep woods and on the unpathed wold
Brightens in patient moss and wistful frond.
Not yet cascades of melody invoke
The holy dawn, but all the air perceives,
By some fine thrill, the rushing northward flight
Of myriad wings, despite
The nonchalances of this crookback oak,
Still clinging to its russet shreds of leaves.
Not yet the laughing hid-folk of the earth
Thrust Up white helm and golden coronet,
Sweet elfin host armored in gossamer,
But gentle tremors stir
The conscious mold; new beauty comes to birth
Under the snow's fast-melting coverlet.
Not yet, not yet the yearly miracle
Is wrought, but ecstasy is on the wing,
And her divine, irrevocable flight
Is swift as all delight.
The heart is hushed as for the sacring-bell,
Awe-smitten by expectancy of spring.

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Poem Submitted: Friday, April 16, 2010

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