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Poem by Madison Julius Cawein


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Below the sunset's range of rose,
Below the heaven's deepening blue,
Down woodways where the balsam blows,
And milkweed tufts hang, gray with dew,
A Jersey heifer stops and lows
The cows come home by one, by two.

There is no star yet: but the smell
Of hay and pennyroyal mix
With herb aromas of the dell,
Where the root-hidden cricket clicks:
Among the ironweeds a bell
Clangs near the rail-fenced clover-ricks.

She waits upon the slope beside
The windlassed well the plum trees shade,
The well curb that the goose-plums hide;
Her light hand on the bucket laid,
Unbonneted she waits, glad-eyed,
Her gown as simple as her braid.

She sees fawn-colored backs among
The sumacs now; a tossing horn
Its clashing bell of copper rung:
Long shadows lean upon the corn,
And slow the day dies, scarlet stung,
The cloud in it a rosy thorn.

Below the pleasant moon, that tips
The tree tops of the hillside, fly
The flitting bats; the twilight slips,
In firefly spangles, twinkling by,
Through which he comes: Their happy lips
Meetand one star leaps in the sky.

He takes her bucket, and they speak
Of married hopes while in the grass
The plum drops glowing as her cheek;
The patient cows look back or pass:
And in the west one golden streak
Burns as if God gazed through a glass.



Madison Julius Cawein


Madison Julius Cawein's other poems:
  1. The Wood God
  2. Poe
  3. Dogtown
  4. Love's Calendar
  5. Fall


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