Friday, December 8, 2017

Poem in October by Dylan Thomas


Poem in October

        It was my thirtieth year to heaven     
Woke to my hearing from harbour and neighbour wood     
        And the mussel pooled and the heron                
                        Priested shore           
                The morning beckon      
With water praying and call of seagull and rook     
And the knock of sailing boats on the webbed wall           
                Myself to set foot                
                        That second        
        In the still sleeping town and set forth.         

        My birthday began with the water-     
Birds and the birds of the winged trees flying my name        
        Above the farms and the white horses                
                        And I rose            
                In a rainy autumn     
And walked abroad in shower of all my days     
High tide and the heron dived when I took the road            
                Over the border                
                        And the gates        
        Of the town closed as the town awoke.         

        A springful of larks in a rolling     
Cloud and the roadside bushes brimming with whistling        
        Blackbirds and the sun of October                
                        Summery            
                On the hill's shoulder,     
Here were fond climates and sweet singers suddenly     
Come in the morning where I wandered and listened            
                To the rain wringing                
                        Wind blow cold         
        In the wood faraway under me.         

        Pale rain over the dwindling harbour     
And over the sea wet church the size of a snail        
        With its horns through mist and the castle                
                        Brown as owls             
                But all the gardens     
Of spring and summer were blooming in the tall tales     
Beyond the border and under the lark full cloud.             
                There could I marvel                
                        My birthday        
        Away but the weather turned around.         

        It turned away from the blithe country     
And down the other air and the blue altered sky        
        Streamed again a wonder of summer                 
                        With apples             
                Pears and red currants     
And I saw in the turning so clearly a child's     
Forgotten mornings when he walked with his mother             
                Through the parables                 
                        Of sunlight        
        And the legends of the green chapels         

        And the twice told fields of infancy     
That his tears burned my cheeks and his heart moved in mine.        
        These were the woods the river and the sea                
                        Where a boy             
                In the listening     
Summertime of the dead whispered the truth of his joy     
To the trees and the stones and the fish in the tide.             
                And the mystery                
                        Sang alive        
        Still in the water and singing birds.         

        And there could I marvel my birthday     
Away but the weather turned around. And the true        
        Joy of the long dead child sang burning                
                        In the sun.             
                It was my thirtieth        
Year to heaven stood there then in the summer noon        
Though the town below lay leaved with October blood.             
                O may my heart's truth                
                        Still be sung        
        On this high hill in a year's turning.

 

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