The March Thaw
On — turgid, bellowing — tramp the freshet rills,
Heaped up with yellow wine, the winter’s brew.
Out-thrown, they choke and tumble from the hills,
And lash their tawny bodies, whipping through.
With flattened bells comes scudding purple rain;
The cold sky breaks and drenches out the snow.
Far from the perfect circle of the sky
The heavy winds lick off the boughs they blow;
And fields are cleansed for plows to slice again,
For April shall laugh downward by and by.
With purifying blasts the wind stalks out
And sweeps the carrion of winter on;
It prods the dank mists, stamps with jest about,
And sows the first blooms on the greening lawn.
Far up the planks of sky the winter’s dross
Goes driven to the north; her rank smells wave
In unseen humors to the icy pole.
The charwomen of the sky, with brushes, lave
And wash the fields for green, and rocks for moss,
And busily polish up the earth’s dull soul.
Edwin Curran (born 1892)
from Poems, 1919
[Poem is in the public domain in the United States]
Edwin Curran biography