Friday, November 02, 2012

Poetry Friday: In Heaven It Is Always Autumn

I love this poem by Elizabeth Spires in so many ways.

First, anything that links autumn and heaven is intrinsically right and just.

Second, for lines like this:

It is the last of many last days. Is it enough?
To rest in this moment? To turn our faces to the sun?
To watch the lineaments of a world passing?

Third, I love it just because it sprang from Elizabeth Spires, who is the author of The Mouse of Amherst, a book we love and one which I've posted about several times.

I hope this poem settles in your bones the same way a quintessential autumn day settles in, deep and golden and passing, but with the promise of warmth and unfolding regeneration in faraway days to come.

In Heaven It Is Always Autumn
by Elizabeth Spires

"In Heaven It Is Always Autumn" ~~ John Donne

In heaven it is always autumn. The leaves are always near
to falling there but never fall, and pairs of souls out walking
heaven's paths no longer feel the weight of years upon them.
Safe in heaven's calm, they take each other's arm,
the light shining through them, all joy and terror gone.
But we are far from heaven here, in a garden ragged and unkept
as Eden would be with the walls knocked down,

(Read the rest here, at The Writer's Almanac.)

Worthwhile links:

Folger Shakespeare Library, with a link to Spires reading this poem, and explaining its background, and a link to her Emily Dickinson Birthday Tribute Reading in 1999.

More about Elizabeth Spires.


The Poetry Friday roundup is at Mainely Writes

(Photo thanks to Stock.xchng.)


Andromeda Jazmon Sibley said...

Oh how I love this poem! Favorite lines:"The light is gold, the sun pulling
the long shadow soul out of each thing, disclosing an outcome."

and the end: "where the final falling off is slow, a slow and radiant happening."


Ruth said...

This one's new to me, and I love it. Thanks!

Donna said...

Wonderful! Thanks!

Linda at teacherdance said...

I like the poem, but really, I love the title. It just conjures up such hope and safety, I think. Thanks!

laurasalas said...

What beautiful and reassuring images...