A Backward Spring

The trees are afraid to put forth buds,
And there is timidity in the grass;
The plots lie gray where gouged by spuds,
   And whether next week will pass
Free of sly sour winds is the fret of each bush
   Of barberry waiting to bloom.

Yet the snowdrop's face betrays no gloom,
And the primrose pants in its heedless push,
Though the myrtle asks if it's worth the fight
   This year with frost and rime
   To venture one more time
On delicate leaves and buttons of white
From the selfsame bough as at last year's prime,
And never to ruminate on or remember
What happened to it in mid-December.

April 1917.

Why be at Pains

(Wooer's Song) 

Why be at pains that I should know
   You sought not me?
Do breezes, then, make features glow
   So rosily?
Come, the lit port is at our back,
   And the tumbling sea;
Elsewhere the lampless uphill track
   To uncertainty!

O should not we two waifs join hands?
   I am alone,
You would enrich me more than lands
   By being my own.
Yet, though this facile moment flies,
   Close is your tone,
And ere to-morrow's dewfall dries
   I plough the unknown.