The Great War

from Herb o' Grace, an electronic edition

The Garden

I know a garden like a child,

Clean and new-washed and reconciled.

It grows its own sweet way, yet still

Has guidance of some tender will

That clips, confines, its wilder mood

And makes it happy, being good.

Around the lordly mountains stand,

For this is an enchanted land,

As though their splendours stood to grace

This little lovely garden place,

Looking with wise and keeping eyes

Upon the garden sanctities.

Box borders edge each little bed,

Paths narrow for a child to tread

Divide the kitchen garden, dear

And sweet with musk and lavender,

And water-mints and beans in bloom.

Be sure the honeybee's at home.

How should I tell in a sweet list

Of beauties, rose and amethyst;

The little water-garden cool

On sultry days, and beautiful

The wall-garden, the shade, the sun,

Since they are lovely, every one.

Hot honey of the pines is sweet,

And when the day's at three o'clock heat

A winding walk will you invite

To a new garden out of sight.

And a green seat is set so near

The sluggish, stealing backwater.

The Spirit of the garden plays

At hide-and-seek an hundred ways

And when you've captured her, she will

Elude you, calling backward still,

A silver echo -- a sweet child,

Demure and lovesome, gay and wild.