Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE FOUR SEASONS, by PHILIP AYRES



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THE FOUR SEASONS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: When winter's past, then ev'ry field and hill
Last Line: Returns to dust, a shadow, and a nothing lies.
Subject(s): Seasons


WHEN Winter's past, then ev'ry field and hill,
The SPRING with flowers does fill,
Soft winds do cleanse the air,
Repel the fogs, and make the weather fair;
Cold frosts are gone away,
The rivers are at liberty,
And their just tribute pay,
Of liquid pearls, and crystal to the sea;
To whom each brook and fountain runs,
The stable mother of those straggling sons.

CHORUS

But then,
In a short space,
WINTER returns again,
Ere Sol has run his annual race;
But, Ah! When Death's keen arrow flies,
And hits poor MAN,
Do what he can,
He dies;
Returns to dust, a Shadow, and a Nothing lies.

SUMMER

When flow'ry May is past, the Spring is o'er,
Then our cool breezes end;
For Aeolus does send
His sultry blasts from off the southern shore;
The Sun bows down his head,
And darts on us his fiery rays,
Plants droop, and seem as dead,
Most creatures seek for shade their diff'rent ways;
All things as if for moisture cry,
Even rivers with the common thirst grow dry.

CHORUS

But then,
In a short space,
The SPRING returns again,
Ere Sol has run his annual race:
But, Ah! When Death's keen arrow flies,
And hits poor MAN,
Do what he can,
He dies;
Returns to dust, a Shadow, and a Nothing lies.

AUTUMN

When Summer's done, green trees begin to yield;
Their leaves with age decay,
They're stript of their array;
Scarce can the rains revive the russet field:
The flowers run up to seed,
Orchards with choice of fruit abound,
Which sight and taste do feed:
The grateful boughs even kiss their parent ground:
The Elm's kind wife, the tender Vine,
Is pregnant with her heavenly burden, Wine.

CHORUS

But then,
In a short space,
SUMMER returns again,
Ere Sol has run his annual race:
But, Ah! When Death's keen arrow flies,
And hits poor MAN,
Do what he can,
He dies;
Returns to dust, a Shadow, and a Nothing lies.

WINTER

When Autumn's past, sharp eastern winds do blow,
Thick clouds obscure the day,
Frost makes the currents stay,
The aged mountains hoary are with snow.
Altho' the Winter rage;
The wronged trees revenge conspire,
Its fury they assuage;
Alive they serve for fence, when dead for fire;
All creatures from its outrage fly,
Those which want shelter or relief must die.

CHORUS

But then,
In a short space,
AUTUMN returns again,
Ere Sol has run his annual race:
But, Ah! When Death's keen arrow flies,
And hits poor MAN,
Do what he can,
He dies;
Returns to dust, a Shadow, and a Nothing lies.





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