Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, IN OCTOBER, by JOHN BURROUGHS

Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

IN OCTOBER, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Now comes the sunset of the verdant year
Last Line: That breathes of peace and rest.
Subject(s): Autumn; October; Seasons; Fall

Now comes the sunset of the verdant year,
Chemic fires, still and slow,
Burn in the leaves, till trees and groves appear
Dipped in the sunset's glow.

Through many-stained windows of the wood
The day sends down its beams,
Till all the acorn-punctured solitude
Of sunshine softly dreams.

I take my way where sentry cedars stand
Along the bushy lane,
And whitethroats stir and call on every hand,
Or lift their wavering strain;

The hazel-bush holds up its crinkled gold
And scents the loitering breeze --
A nuptial wreath amid its leafage old
That laughs at frost's decrees.

A purple bloom is creeping o'er the ash --
Dull wine against the day,
While dusky cedars wear a crimson sash
Of woodbine's kindled spray.

I see the stolid oak tree's smouldering fire
Sullen against emerald rye;
And yonder sugar maple's wild desire
To match the sunset sky.

On hedge and tree the bittersweet has hung
Its fruit that looks like a flower;
While alder spray with coral berries strung
Is part of autumn's dower.

The plaintive calls of bluebirds fill the air,
Wandering voices in the morn;
The ruby kinglet, flitting here and there,
Winds against his elfin horn.

Now Downy shyly drills his winter cell,
His white chips strew the ground;
While squirrels bark from hill or acorned dell --
A true autumnal sound.

I hear the feathered thunder of the grouse
Soft rolling through the wood,
Or pause to note where hurrying mole or mouse
Just stirs the solitude.

Anon the furtive flock-call of the quail
Comes up from weedy fields;
Afar the mellow thud of lonely flail
Its homely music yields.

Behold the orchards piled with painted spheres
New plucked from bending trees;
And bronzed huskers tossing golden ears
In genial sun and breeze.

Once more the tranquil days brood o'er the hills,
And soothe earth's toiling breast;
A benediction all the landscape fills
That breathes of peace and rest.

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