The Wilting Flower
Wilting flowers that hang their heads
Returning slowly to their beds
Have not the glories of their blooms,
The grand displays, the sprays, the brooms,
The flourish of the fine floret
That cheer the spring and gayly set
Our hearts astir, our hopes to rise
With them to look on sunlit skies.
Now the limp and fading leaves
Touch the saddened heart that grieves
When beauty dies and life expires,
E’en so faint a life as flowers.
Briefly the greenery goes gold,
A glory that it cannot hold.
The sparkle, zing, the zeal and zest
Are desiccated now and lost.
Broken seedpods loosely scattered
Lie beneath them, cracked and shattered.
Their Raison d’etre sown or flown,
Bare stalks nod neglected down,
Superfluous, forgot, unheeded
Their progeny distant now and seeded.
Sun and season turn away
And disavow the shortened day.
Some lives burrow, others fly,
But stems stand stalk still to die.
At last they all lie down as one
On the spot where they begun,
No lament, no tears, no sighs,
Beneath the chill and autumn skies.
They are Nature’s meek and mild;
They are Nature’s perfect child.
The time to blaze and bloom and riot
Surrenders to a time of quiet,
A peaceful, silent, easeful hour,
In a cool and tranquil bower,
Returning to their natural god,
The dark and all-receiving sod.
No hymns, no choirs, no angel wings,
Unmindful of henceforward things,
Willingly, with no assurance
Of fortune, fate or future ‘durance,
Amenable to never knowing
Whether coming here or going
Answers any mystic power.
Learn the lesson of the flower.