Rooks In October

They sweep up, crying, riding the wind,
Ashen on blue outspread —
Gilt-lustred wing, sharp light-glazed beak,
And low flat ravenous head.

Claws dangling, down they softly swoop
Out of the eastern sun
Into the yellowing green-leaved boughs —
Their morning feast begun.

Clasping a twig that even a linnet
Might bend in song, they clip
Pat from the stalked embossed green cup
Its fruitage bitter-ripe.

Oh, what divine far hours their beauty
Of old for me beguiled,
When — acorn, oak, untarnished heavens —
I watched them as a child!
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