Madison Julius Cawein Poems >>
Accolon Of Gaul: Part II

Noon; and the wistful Autumn sat among
 The lurid woodlands; chiefs who now were wrung
 By crafty ministers, sun, wind and frost,
 To don imperial pomp at any cost.
 On each wild hill they stood as if for war
 Flaunting barbaric raiment wide and far;
 And burnt-out lusts in aged faces raged;
 Their tottering state by flattering zephyrs paged,
 Who in a little fretful while, how soon!
 Would work rebellion under some wan moon;
 Pluck their old beards deriding; shriek and tear
 Rich royalty; sow tattered through the air
 Their purple majesty; and from each head
 Dash down its golden crown, and in its stead
 Set there a pale-death mockery of snow,
 Leave them bemoaning beggars bowed with woe.
 Blow, wood-wind, blow! now that all's fresh and fine
 As earth and wood can make it; fresh as brine
 And rare with sodden scents of underbrush.
 Ring, and one hears a cavalcade a-rush;
 Bold blare of horns; shrill music of steel bows;--
 A horn! a horn! the hunt is up and goes
 Beneath the acorn-dropping oaks in green,--
 Dark woodland green, a boar-spear held between
 His selle and hunter's head, and at his thigh
 A good, broad hanger, and one fist on high
 To wind the rapid echoes from his horn,
 That start the field birds from the sheav