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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 8, Issue 8 (December 1, 1933)

The Madrigal of Buds and Wings

The Madrigal of Buds and Wings.

Come, show me, now, a glimpse of fresher graces
Than Spring's first frieze along the plum trees set;
Her wan tattoo across their ebon faces,
Where starlings clack their bills like castanets.
The grasses flutter green wings without ceasing
And ring-like roads hold bravely in the claw
The jewelled pools whose circled gleams are creasing
Beneath the sleep warm wings of wren and daw.
Behold the purple prime of branches drunken
On cloudy pottles drained of claret rains,
While thrushes shout from cob-webs, winter-shrunken,
“The miracle of Spring has come again!”
And once again the apple buds come creeping
On fragrant feet and ringing bells of bloom,
While spotted eggs are tapped by younglings sleeping
The sleep of ghosts in haunted silken rooms.
Ye lovers! drown your shadows in the river
And make a living mercury that shows,
In silence, with premonitory quivers,
The courtesies of passion to the slow.
Yet, even as ye kiss, the season's ending,
The white dust shifts its dapple from the hedge
To fit a mask to every wind that's bending
Narcissus-like upon the water's edge.

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