Core: noun, the most important part of a thing, the essence; from the Latin cor, meaning heart.

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 Volume 2.9 This View’s Poetry November 4, 2002 

    To Autumn    

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness!
   Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
   With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
   And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
      To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
   With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
   For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
   Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
   Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
   Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
      Spares the next swath and all its twinèd flowers;
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
   Steady thy laden head across a brook;
   Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
      Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
   Think not of them, thou hast thy music too, —
While barrèd clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
   And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
   Among the river sallows, borne aloft
      Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
   Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
   The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft;
      And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

    John Keats (1795–1821)    

The Oxford Book of English Verse (1900) #627
ed. Arthur Quiller-Couch


    My Autumn Walk    

On woodlands ruddy with autumn
   The amber sunshine lies;
I look on the beauty round me,
   And tears come into my eyes.

For the wind that sweeps the meadows
   Blows out of the far Southwest,
Where our gallant men are fighting,
   And the gallant dead are at rest.   
The golden-rod is leaning,
   And the purple aster waves,
In a breeze from the land of battles,
   A breath from the land of graves.

Full fast the leaves are dropping
   Before that wandering breath;
As fast, on the field of battle,
   Our brethren fall in death.

Beautiful over my pathway
   The forest spoils are shed;
They are spotting the grassy hillocks
   With purple and gold and red.

Beautiful is the death-sleep
   Of those who bravely fight
In their country’s holy quarrel,
   And perish for the Right.

But who shall comfort the living,
   The light of whose homes is gone:
The bride that, early widowed,
   Lives broken-hearted on;

The matron whose sons are lying
   In graves on a distant shore;
The maiden, whose promised husband
   Comes back from the war no more?

I look on the peaceful dwellings
   Whose windows glimmer in sight,
With croft and garden and orchard,
   That bask in the mellow light;

And I know that, when our couriers
   With news of victory come,
They will bring a bitter message
   Of hopeless grief to some.

Again I turn to the woodlands,
   And shudder as I see
The mock-grape’s blood-red banner
   Hung out on the cedar-tree;

And I think of days of slaughter,
   And the night-sky red with flames,
On the Chattahoochee’s meadows,
   And the wasted banks of the James.

Oh, for the fresh spring-season,
   When the groves are in their prime,
And far away in the future
   Is the frosty autumn-time!

Oh, for that better season,
   When the pride of the foe shall yield,
And the hosts of God and Freedom
   March back from the well-won field;

And the matron shall clasp her first-born
   With tears of joy and pride;
And the scarred and war-worn lover
   Shall claim his promised bride!

The leaves are swept from the branches;
   But the living buds are there,
With folded flower and foliage,
   To sprout in a kinder air.

    William Cullen Bryant (1794-1878)    

An American Anthology, 1787–1900 (1900) # 98
ed. Edmund Clarence Stedman



I saw old Autumn in the misty morn
Stand shadowless like Silence, listening
To silence, for no lonely bird would sing
Into his hollow ear from woods forlorn,
Nor lowly hedge nor solitary thorn; —
Shaking his languid locks all dewy bright
With tangled gossamer that fell by night,
   Pearling his coronet of golden corn.

Where are the songs of Summer? — With the sun,
Oping the dusky eyelids of the south,
Till shade and silence waken up as one,
And Morning sings with a warm odorous mouth.
Where are the merry birds? — Away, away,
On panting wings through the inclement skies,
         Lest owls should prey
         Undazzled at noonday,
And tear with horny beak their lustrous eyes.

Where are the blooms of Summer? — In the west,
Blushing their last to the last sunny hours,
When the mild Eve by sudden Night is prest
Like tearful Proserpine, snatch’d from her flow’rs
         To a most gloomy breast.
Where is the pride of Summer, — the green prime, —
The many, many leaves all twinkling? — Three
On the moss’d elm; three on the naked lime
Trembling, — and one upon the old oak-tree!
   Where is the Dryad’s immortality? —
Gone into mournful cypress and dark yew,
Or wearing the long gloomy Winter through
   In the smooth holly’s green eternity.

The squirrel gloats on his accomplish’d hoard,
The ants have brimm’d their garners with ripe grain,
      And honey bees have stored
The sweets of Summer in their luscious cells;
The swallows all have wing’d across the main;
But here the Autumn melancholy dwells,
      And sighs her tearful spells
Amongst the sunless shadows of the plain.
         Alone, alone,
         Upon a mossy stone,
She sits and reckons up the dead and gone
With the last leaves for a love-rosary,
Whilst all the wither’d world looks drearily,
Like a dim picture of the drownèd past
In the hush’d mind’s mysterious far away,
Doubtful what ghostly thing will steal the last
Into that distance, gray upon the gray.

O go and sit with her, and be o’ershaded
Under the languid downfall of her hair:
She wears a coronal of flowers faded
Upon her forehead, and a face of care; —
There is enough of wither’d everywhere
To make her bower,—and enough of gloom;
There is enough of sadness to invite,
If only for the rose that died, whose doom
Is Beauty’s, — she that with the living bloom
Of conscious cheeks most beautifies the light:
There is enough of sorrowing, and quite
Enough of bitter fruits the earth doth bear, —
Enough of chilly droppings for her bowl;
Enough of fear and shadowy despair,
To frame her cloudy prison for the soul!

    Thomas Hood (1798–1845)    

The Oxford Book of English Verse (1900) #647
ed. Arthur Quiller-Couch


    From the Silence of Time, Time’s Silence borrow.
In the heart of To-day is the word of To-morrow.
The Builders of Joy are the Children of Sorrow.
    William Sharp (1856-1902)    

Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse p. 400
ed. D. H. S. Nicholson and A. H. E. Lee


 Volume 2.9 This View’s Poetry November 4, 2002 

The View from the Core, and all original material, © E. L. Core 2002. All rights reserved.

Cor ad cor loquitur J. H. Newman — “Heart speaks to heart”