Sunday, September 20, 2015

Amy Lowell: "September, 1918"

This afternoon was the colour of water falling through sunlight;
The trees glittered with the tumbling of leaves;
The sidewalks shone like alleys of dropped maple leaves,
And the houses ran along them laughing out of square, open windows.
Under a tree in the park,
Two little boys, lying flat on their faces,
Were carefully gathering red berries
To put in a pasteboard box.
Some day there will be no war,
Then I shall take out this afternoon
And turn it in my fingers,
And remark the sweet taste of it upon my palate,
And note the crisp variety of its flights of leaves.
To-day I can only gather it
And put it into my lunch-box,
For I have time for nothing
But the endeavour to balance myself
Upon a broken world.

"September, 1918" by Amy Lowell, from The Complete Poetical Works of Amy Lowell (Houghton Mifflin Company, 1950). Text as posted at The Poetry Foundation.

Curator's note: September, 1918, was a time of major Allied offensives during World War I.

Art credit: Untitled image by unknown photographer.

1 comment :

  1. This made me go back and reread David Budbill's "Sometimes", which you posted in September 2013, as well as Adam Zagajewski's "Try to Praise the Mutilated World" from September 2014. Each examines the savoring and suffering that make up human life and the power of noticing the everyday beauties.


Thank you for participating respectfully in this blog's community of readers.