Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, SPRING IN THE PARK, by RICHARD EUGENE BURTON



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SPRING IN THE PARK, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: This day of april ardors, a careless passerby
Last Line: Blossomed and blessed the hour, redeemed the town.
Subject(s): April; Beauty; Happiness; Japan; Parks; Peace; Spring; Joy; Delight; Japanese


THIS day of April ardors, a careless passerby,
I stepped for a moment aside from the city street,
Into the Park, where winding walks
And cunning contours of earth, with the fresh earth smell
And the gleam and glance of pools that wait a swan,
And writhen trees on rising mounds wherein
Rest the quaint Pagodas, -- all make a dream
Little and dear, from far Japan;
Right in the midst of roaring, keen New York,
Roaring with trade, keen in the dollar hunt.

There I sat me down,
Glad to be free, glad to be told once more
That Beauty lives, near by, and ever calls
Lute-clear, if one will only harken and hear.

Then, as I sat and mused and drank it in,
Of a sudden, all the peering, great-eyed buildings
Lining the Park by east and west and south,
A-stare, innumerous, primly intent on business,
I saw were looking down into the Park,
Their barter quite forgotten, out of a myriad eyes,
Tranced by this little Japanese dream of Beauty,
And, lo, they spoke and said:
"Oh, careless passer-by,
Ours is not the lust of gain nor housing of folk,
Not these alone;
Nor chaffer on 'Change as the shouldering crowds go by.
We see you down there midst the tended ways,
The pretty shrubs and serpentining walks,
With the wood-sweet Pagodas topping the tiny hills, --
And we yearn, O God, how we yearn
(Regarding you there, a careless passer-by,
Out of our gaunt, world-weary eyes,
Aware of the sun-soaked bliss athrob in your blood).

"For we, too, yearn for Beauty, and in a trance
Solemn, unwinking, we gaze and gaze
Out of our sentinel orbs, and silently
Send you a brother-word this day, when spring
Moves in ecstasy, and the exquisite sky
Softens the discolored town, and binds together
Into a sacred unison earth and heaven,
And fills a heart long drained of dizzy joy. . . .

"Yes, we are with you, of you, all our eyes
See only yonder little tender dream
Of rock and swan and sky and sweet snatches of water --
Message from overseas of an artist folk
To the big, bluff splendid land, lest it forget
Beauty, nor hold her holy, meek in her shrine."

So the buildings spoke, when I, a careless passerby,
Stepped for a moment aside from the choked swift street
Into a charmed demesne of Peace and Joy,
Where city noises lessened to sounds more like
The twitter and chirp of birds;
While over all, far up, a sky of early spring
(Deep blue swooned to a paler opaline tint)
Blossomed and blessed the hour, redeemed the town.





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