Poems (Botta)/The Dying Sycamores

THE DYING SYCAMORES.


A beauty like young womanhood’s Upon the green earth lies, And June’s sweet smile hath waked again All summer’s harmonies.

The insects hum their dreamy song, The trees their honors wear, And languid with its perfume spoils Sighs the voluptuous air.

A gorgeous wealth of leaf and bloom Enchants the dazzled sight; And over earth and sky there smiles A Presence of delight.

From yon sad dying Sycamores, Alone a shadow falls,— As from the ghastly form of Death, In Egypt’s banquet-halls.

Against the soft blue sky they stand, Their naked limbs outspread, And to the throbbing life around, They murmur of the dead.

Spring, with her soft and odorous breath, Hath sighed o’er them in vain, Nor sun, nor dew, nor summer shower, Awakes their bloom again.

Oh stately monarchs of the wood, What blight hath o’er ye passed? What canker wastes your noble hearts? What spell is on ye cast?

I watch ye where a thousand forms With life and beauty glow, Till half I deem that on ye lies Some weight of human woe.

Sad emblems are ye of those hearts In this fair world of ours, Who live unloving and unloved, Oh dying Sycamores.