new zealand electronic poetry centre

Ursula Bethell

online works


Autumn Roses

The roses of Autumn are less numerous
Than the accoutrement of valiant Spring,
But they are more beautiful, and far more precious,
Each several flower presents itself a perfect thing.
They are more lasting, their colour is more lustrous,
With a more intimate and insistent voice
Their pungent scent speaks . . . What is meant to us
By these perfect, departing roses? The joys
Adorning the declension of life’s afternoon,
Infrequent, rarer, to be remitted soon,
Are so much the fairer, so much the dearer to us,
Declaring the ineffable vision to be nearer to us.
Their perfume is the incense of jubilee
For what the deaf shall hear soon, and the blind see.

From Time and Place (Caxton, 1936)


Last updated 10 April, 2005