Ten O'Clock No More

A poem by John Frederick Freeman

The wind has thrown
The boldest of trees down.
Now disgraced it lies,
Naked in spring beneath the drifting skies,
Naked and still.

It was the wind
So furious and blind
That scourged half England through,
Ruining the fairest where most fair it grew
By dell and hill.

And springing here,
The black clouds dragging near,
Against this lonely elm
Thrust all his strength to maim and overwhelm
In one wild shock.

As in the deep
Satisfaction of dark sleep
The tree her dream dreamed on,
And woke to feel the wind's arms round her thrown
And her head rock.

And the wind raught
Her ageing boughs and caught
Her body fast again.
Then in one agony of age, grief, pain,
She fell and died.

Her noble height,
Branches that loved the light,
Her music and cool shade,
Her memories and all of her is dead
On the hill side.

But the wind stooped.
With madness tired, and drooped
In the soft valley and slept.
While morning strangely round the hush'd tree crept
And called in vain.

The birds fed where
The roots uptorn and bare
Thrust shameful at the sky;
And pewits round the tree would dip and cry
With the old pain.

"Ten o'clock's gone!"
Said sadly every one.
And mothers looking thought
Of sons and husbands far away that fought:--
And looked again.

Reader Comments

Tell us what you think of 'Ten O'Clock No More ' by John Frederick Freeman

comments powered by Disqus

Home | Search | About this website | Contact | Privacy Policy