The leafless branch and meadow sere,
The dull and leaden skies,
Join with the mournful wind and drear
In dirges for the passing year,
Which unreturning flies.
The night in starless gloom descends,
Nor can the pale moonshine
Break through the clouds whose veil extends
In boundless form, and darkly blends
With the horizon's line.
Fond nature, in a playful mood,
In cover of the night,
Arrays the plain and forest rude,
The city and the solitude,
In robe of spotless white.