I set here and the earth is wrapped in snow,
And the cold air is thick with falling night;
I think of the still, dewy summer eves,
When cows came slowly sauntering up the lane,
Waiting to nibble at the juicy grass;
When the green earth was full of changing life,
When the warm wind blew soft, and slowly passed,
Caressing now and then some wayside flower,
Stopping to stir the tender maple-leaves,
And breathing all its fragrance on the air!
I think of the broad meadows, daisy-white,
With the long shade of some stray apple-tree
Falling across them,–and the rustlings faint
When evening breezes shook along the grass.
I think of all the thousand summer sounds,–
The cricket’s chirp, repeated far and near;
The sleepy note of robins in their nest;
The whippoorwill, whose sudden cry rang out,
Plaintive, yet strong, upon the startled air.
And so it was the summer twilight fell,
And deepened to the darkness of the night;
And now I lift my heart out of my dream
And see instead the pale, cold, dying lights,
The dull gray skies, the barren, snow-clad fields,
That come to us when winter evenings come.