I Have Heard Springtime

 

I have heard springtime: the tinkle of windbells and blossoms

I have seen summer: the swarming and shimmer of seagulls.

Now I feel autumn: the shadows of trees on my skin;

And an odor of winter sweeps down on the wind:

A smell of the trees turning brown on the wind,

And the snow.

I have seen nests left empty by swallows in summer.

I have seen seagulls cross over the water in winter.

Change is all shapeless: massed in the treetops and hills,

And a pressure of darkness moves subtle and still:

The silence of night flowing ancient and chill.

And I know

The crossing of silence with silence, and seagulls, and stars;

The lattice of midnight on mastheads and halyards and spars.

It beckons: a beacon with firefly flashes and fingers.

And night has muffled the faraway singers,

And night has broken the channel buoy’s ding.

And I go.

 

October 25, 1964