Today is another glorious autumn day in my adopted home city of Glasgow, Scotland, UK. Our default position here is wet, often cold, resolutely cheerful in an ironic, defiant kind of way. Today is different. There is a reflective, drifty mood around. There is hazy warmth in the sun. Park benches in the leaf-strewn park are full of outdoor lunchers – our last chance till the Spring?
And I am feeling melancholic, but in a good way….reflective….poetic. Here are two autumnal poems I hope you will enjoy. The first needs no introduction. The second, whose author I do not know and with whom google was no help, I found pinned to a board inside the David Elder Chapel, an exquisite, still jewel of a hidden place within Glasgow’s Western Infirmary.
Enjoy the poems – and this season!
‘Autumn’ by ~ Rainer Maria Rilke ~
O Lord, it is time
The summer was so vast
Put your shadows on the sundials
And in the fields let the wind loose.
Order the last fruits to become ripe
Give them two more sunny days
Push them to fulfillment
And force the last sweetness into the heavy wine.
He who has no house now will not build one
He who is alone will be so for a long time to come
Will stay awake, read, write long letters
And restlessly walk in the park among the blown leaves.
(Translated by Charlotte Schmid)
photo: Anne Whitaker
I am the Season of Autumn
I am pleased to meet you
I am the season of Autumn.
I am the Harvest of Spring and Summer’s labour.
I am the fruits, the grains, the berries,
The beautiful colours of a glorious planet.
Winding down after a frenzy of activity.
I am the gentle approach to my sister Winter.
When Autumn leaves begin to fall it is time to
Prepare for colder weather and to remind each
Other of those who are most vulnerable.
During the longer night please give of
Your time to those who really need it.
Know that essentially the whole worth
Of a kind deed lies in the love that inspired it.
Eternal happiness is seldom found by those who seek it,
Never by those who seek it for themselves.
400 words copyright Anne Whitaker 2012
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