Spring and Fall: to a Young Child
– Gerard Manley Hopkins
Margaret, are you grieving
Over Goldengrove unleaving?
Leaves, like the things of man, you
With your fresh thoughts care for, can you?
Ah! as the heart grows older
It will come to such sights colder
By and by, nor spare a sigh
Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie;
And yet you will weep and know why.
Now no matter, child, the name:
Sorrow’s springs are the same.
Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressed
What heart heard of, ghost guessed:
It is the blight man was born for,
It is Margaret you mourn for.
For more information on Gerard Manley Hopkins, please click here: http://www.poets.org/poet.php/prmPID/284
A dear old favourite, lovely to see it here.
‘Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie’
what a line!
All the poems you post here are terrific, old friends and new finds alike, I’d love to see them together as an anthology.
Lucy, that very line –though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie– is one that I used to repeat over and over to myself when I was a kid and first read this poem. I’m so glad you like the poems; coming from you, that’s a true compliment.
There is a small grove of aspen trees that grows near our local creek. I always think of ‘though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie’ when their leaves fall.
Hopkins is a favourite poet for me too. I shall be ever thankful to the teacher who patiently guided us through his verse forms.