Saturday, September 12, 2015

The Summer Rain / John Askham

The Summer Rain

The cloudy fountains are unsealed,
And barren hill, and thirsty field,
And drooping vale, and famished plain
Drink long, deep draughts of Summer rain.

The flowers rejoice, and upward hold
Their cups of ruby, pearl, and gold;
Each drop distilled to perfumes rare,
With incense loads the humid air.

The wood with sweet, soft music rings.
And a baptismal anthem sings;
On every leaf, and tree, and stem.
Sparkles a new-created gem.

The cornfields 'neath the blessing bow;
To their full height the rivers grow;
The willows by the brooklet's side
Lave their dank tresses in the tide —

Drink to their fill the secret springs,
As every stream due tribute brings,
Till the cool reservoirs below
With limpid treasures overflow.

In bye-way and in busy street,
Like pattering of children's feet,
With precious blessings in its train
Comes the refreshing Summer rain.

John Askham (1825-1894)
from Descriptive Poems, 1866

[Poem is in the public domain worldwide]

John Askham biography

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