Monday, 30 July 2018

Poetry Revisited: The Summer’s Sun by Mary Grant

The Summer’s Sun

(from One Hundred Modern Scottish Poets: 1880)

I would the Summer’s sun was bright,
     As Summer’s sun was wont to be;
I would the flowers were half as fair
     As those that used to grace the lea;
I would the moon would sink to rest
     As soft behind the pathless sea;
And that the little birds I love
     Would sing as sweet a song to me.

I would that brook that wanders now
     So sadly down the faded dell,
Would charm mine ear with gladsome sound,
     Like chimings of a silver bell.
I would the stars —Heaven’s beauteous eyes—
     Would look on me with gaze as true;
Or that the veil ‘twixt heaven and earth
     Would beam as softly, sweetly blue.

I know not why fair summer time
     Appears so sadly changed to be;
The snow-clad hills are quite as fair,
     And Robin’s song as sweet to me.
Yet, looking back, I can recall
     One fair and blooming Summer’s day.
When lying ‘mang the flowers, I wept
     To think that earth should pass away.

It was so fair, so softly grand,
     That virgin month of perfumed May,
So simple in her girlish bloom,
     So sweetly, chastely, purely gay.
And now methinks I’d little care
     Though time and earth had passed away;
So cheerless beams the Summer’s sun,
     So winter-like the Summer’s day.

Oh! foolish heart, the Summer’s sun,
     Stars, moon, and flowers, and birds, and sea,
Are pure, and fair, and sweet, and grand,
     As long ago they used to be;
Tis thou hast lost thy hope and joy,
     They faded with thy youth’s bright day,
When all the year was Summer time,
     And every month was gentle May.

Mary Grant (1855-1914)
Scottish poet

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