(30 May 1835 – 2 June 1913 / Headingley)

An Autumn Homily

Here let us sit beneath this oak, and hear
The acorns fitfully fall one by one,
The final harvest of the fading year
Now Summer eves and Autumn days are done.
The orchard rows stand desolate and bare,
Even the mellow quince is gathered now;
The furrow yields the sickle to the share,
And lonely trunks stretch out the leafless bough.
Thus wanes the body ere the mind decays,
And through the heart the vernal sap still flows,
While warm within, on short-lived winter days,
The soul's clear lamp unflickeringly glows.
So are we one with Nature, in the round
Of seasonable change, knit by some tie profound.

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