When You Get Home, Remember Me

Lieutenant De Long, commanding the Jeannette Artic
Expedition, having seen his vessel crushed by the ice,
undertook a perilous journey through the ice and snow
toward the coast of Siberia. With a part of his command
he finally reached the wilderness near the mouth of the
River Lena. Disabled by sickness, hunger and cold, the
little band was compelled to halt, while two of their
number went forward. When the pathetic parting was over,
and after the two seaman had begun their battle with the


When the Year grows Old

I cannot but remember
   When the year grows old --
October -- November --
   How she disliked the cold!

She used to watch the swallows
   Go down across the sky,
And turn from the window
   With a little sharp sigh.

And often when the brown leaves
   Were brittle on the ground,
And the wind in the chimney
   Made a melancholy sound,

She had a look about her
   That I wish I could forget --
The look of a scared thing
   Sitting in a net!


Weather

Once I dipt into the future far as human eye could see,
And I saw the Chief Forecaster, dead as any one can be--
Dead and damned and shut in Hades as a liar from his birth,
With a record of unreason seldome paralleled on earth.
While I looked he reared him solemnly, that incandescent youth,
From the coals that he'd preferred to the advantages of truth.
He cast his eyes about him and above him; then he wrote
On a slab of thin asbestos what I venture here to quote--


We Two-How Long We Were Fool'd


WE two--how long we were fool'd!
Now transmuted, we swiftly escape, as Nature escapes;
We are Nature--long have we been absent, but now we return;
We become plants, leaves, foliage, roots, bark;
We are bedded in the ground--we are rocks;
We are oaks--we grow in the openings side by side;
We browse--we are two among the wild herds, spontaneous as any;
We are two fishes swimming in the sea together;
We are what the locust blossoms are--we drop scent around the lanes,
mornings and evenings;


What care the Dead, for Chanticleer

592

What care the Dead, for Chanticleer—
What care the Dead for Day?
'Tis late your Sunrise vex their face—
And Purple Ribaldry—of Morning

Pour as blank on them
As on the Tier of Wall
The Mason builded, yesterday,
And equally as cool—

What care the Dead for Summer?
The Solstice had no Sun
Could waste the Snow before their Gate—
And knew One Bird a Tune—

Could thrill their Mortised Ear
Of all the Birds that be—
This One—beloved of Mankind
Henceforward cherished be—


When Cold December

WHEN cold December
Froze to grisamber
The jangling bells on the sweet rose-trees--
Then fading slow
And furred is the snow
As the almond's sweet husk--
And smelling like musk.
The snow amygdaline
Under the eglantine
Where the bristling stars shine
Like a gilt porcupine--
The snow confesses
The little Princesses
On their small chioppines
Dance under the orpines.
See the casuistries
Of their slant fluttering eyes--
Gilt as the zodiac
(Dancing Herodiac).


Welsh History

We were a people taut for war; the hills
Were no harder, the thin grass
Clothed them more warmly than the coarse
Shirts our small bones.
We fought, and were always in retreat,
Like snow thawing upon the slopes
Of Mynydd Mawr; and yet the stranger
Never found our ultimate stand
In the thick woods, declaiming verse
To the sharp prompting of the harp.
Our kings died, or they were slain
By the old treachery at the ford.
Our bards perished, driven from the halls
Of nobles by the thorn and bramble.


Waxwings

Four Tao philosophers as cedar waxwings
chat on a February berry bush
in sun, and I am one.

Such merriment and such sobriety--
the small wild fruit on the tall stalk--
was this not always my true style?

Above an elegance of snow, beneath
a silk-blue sky a brotherhood of four
birds. Can you mistake us?

To sun, to feast, and to converse
and all together--for this I have abandoned
all my other lives.


Submitted by Larry Bole


Wash of Cold River

Wash of cold river
in a glacial land,
Ionian water,
chill, snow-ribbed sand,
drift of rare flowers,
clear, with delicate shell-
like leaf enclosing
frozen lily-leaf,
camellia texture,
colder than a rose;

wind-flower
that keeps the breath
of the north-wind --
these and none other;

intimate thoughts and kind
reach out to share
the treasure of my mind,
intimate hands and dear
drawn garden-ward and sea-ward
all the sheer rapture


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