American poet, Henry Van Dyke was born on this day, 10th November 1852 (died, 10th April 1933).
I recently discovered a seasonally-fitting, romantic poem by this man entitled:
‘Autumn in the garden’
‘When the frosty kiss of Autumn in the dark
Makes it mark
On the flowers and the misty morning grieves
Over fallen leaves…’
He imagines himself, on an autumn day, walking around his garden and along the paths once paced, traced, and wandered by previous generations; their thoughts and feelings, their struggles and strife as they dealt with own lives, treading these same paths.
There is the sense of passing and of grief; of patience, sadness and sorrow, all delicately enhanced by the imagery of Autumn. The season in which the trees renounce their brown leaves and the naked flowers give their bodies to the earth, enriching the soil.
My favourite lines come at the end, after a gentle, contemplative stroll through the garden with him…
‘Let us walk in the garden, dearest heart
They who know the sorrows other lives have known
Never walk alone.’
After Autumn, and Winter, we shall have the re-awakening, new life and hope of Spring.
For now we have the vibrant-leaf colours, the moist clouds and damp earthiness of Nature’s cycle.
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