Monday, April 20, 2009

A lady red upon the hill...

Reading through the Nature section of Emily's Collected Poems, each one seems to capture and then reveal in fresh colors the myriad essences of the springtime experience. Emily had two (among many others I'm sure) enviable traits. We know she was an honest and expressive writer. The second trait we deduce from her practice of the first, that she possessed a sensitive and receptive soul.

Here she is painting the paper with the colors of her spring, infusing the threads with the fragrances she captures and sharing her insight of the very trees beneath which she wanders. Notice, too, Emily's excitement in these revelations as she marks her verses with exclamations (in contrast to the staid woods). It is our excitement, too, both as we wander and as we share the season with her in verse.

A lady red upon the hill
Her annual secret keeps;
A lady white within the field
In placid lily sleeps!

The tidy breezes with their brooms
Sweep vale, and hill, and tree!
Prithee, my pretty housewives!
Who may expected be?

The neighbors do not yet suspect!
The woods exchange a smile--
Orchard, and buttercup, and bird--
In such a little while!

And yet how still the landscape stands,
How nonchalant the wood,
As if the resurrection
Were nothing very odd!

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