Now is the time of year when the air should hint of apple cider and bonfires, when sweaters and warm cozy things are all that is needed to fill the heart with delight, when the hue of the trees shifts into more rich and vibrant colors.
Unfortunately, Texas does not participate in this wonderful thing known as “Autumn”. This is a great sorrow to me.
But the official calender declares that it is indeed Fall, and thus it give me the opportunity to share one of my favorite poems.
Hopkins is writing about the deep sorrow of mortality, and a child’s first experience of it as such. Yet there is also a wonder and awe at the fact that innocent can enter into for something as simple as a passing beauty. It is heart wrenching and gorgeous at once, in the most splendidly paradoxical of ways!
Spring and Fall
to a young child
By G.M. Hopkins
MÁRGARÉT, áre you gríeving
Over Goldengrove unleaving?
Leáves, líke the things of man, you
With your fresh thoughts care for, can you?
Áh! ás the heart grows older 5
It will come to such sights colder
By and by, nor spare a sigh
Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie;
And yet you wíll weep and know why.
Now no matter, child, the name: 10
Sórrow’s spríngs áre the same.
Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressed
What heart heard of, ghost guessed:
It ís the blight man was born for,
It is Margaret you mourn for. 15