Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist
poliphilo

The May's Out!

The hawthorn is in flower. My favourite tree. My favourite time of year. Hey nonny nonny.

But that smell- the reek of death with a aftertaste of honey. I had thought of putting one of my own poems here, but it was a very old poem and when I looked at it again I saw it was in dire need of washing and ironing. So here instead is an acknowledged classic by Walter de la Mare.

"THE HAWTHORN HATH A DEATHLY SMELL"

The flowers of the field
Have a sweet smell;
Meadowsweet, tansy, thyme,
And faint-heart pimpernel;
But sweeter even than these,
The silver of the may
Wreathed is with incense for
The Judgment Day.

An apple, a child, dust,
When falls the evening rain,
Wild brier's spicèd leaves,
Breathe memories again;
With further memory fraught,
The silver of the may
Wreathed is with incense for
The Judgment Day.

Eyes of all loveliness--
Shadow of strange delight,
Even as a flower fades
Must thou from sight;
But oh, o'er thy grave's mound,
Till come the Judgment Day,
Wreathed shall with incense he
Thy sharp-thorned may.
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