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Friday, April 29, 2011

Before Harvest

(Robert Fitzgerald, poet laureate, 1984-1985)


Deep and soft and far off over country
A train whistle is explaining something strange
To the cool night, so long, sweet, far away.

In your dark rooms under the elm branches,
Stir, O sleepers in the country towns,
Auburn, Divernon, Chatham, Jacksonville . . .
This is the ebb and weary hour of night.

Only a child benumbed with dreaming
Wakes and listen to the visiting rain
Lick its tongues in the leaves and pass away.

~ Robert Fitzgerald (1910-1985), American poet and translator

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