new zealand electronic poetry centre


Robin Hyde

The Desolate Star And Other Poems


Along the crumbling walls grey lichens creep. 
Nothing will grow but drowsy poppy seeds
That hold the listless chalices of sleep 
In a child’s garden, covered up with weeds.

I will go now and find some ordered place 
Of lawns and old-time gardens, where the earth 
Has grown with aging like a lovely face 
That is not greatly stirred by any mirth. 

No passions storm or sadden in her eyes; 
No follies jingle bells along her street; 
And every grief, grown decorous and wise, 
Must go his ways with patient lips and feet. 

A little smoke from dead-leaf memories 
Shall curl, blue-grey; and I will dwell beside
A wood where blackbirds call, where the old trees
Harbour no dreams save those grown quiet-eyed.

Here, where good rain is given to careful lawns,
Perhaps my peace will slowly come to flower,
And I forget the scent of troubled dawns,
The broken petals of a magic hour.


Last updated 17 February, 2003