September 4, 2009

Poetry Friday--September, 1918

Photo by sarae

What is it about September that brings on melancholy thoughts?

This poem by Amy Lowell, "September, 1918," struck me as being as valid today as it was 90 years ago. Lately, I've been having thoughts about the two wars we are mired in. I, too, am trying to "balance myself/Upon a broken world" and it makes me oh, so, sad, since I don't see the hopeful "Some day there will be no war" ever coming to pass.
September, 1918

This afternoon was the colour of water falling through sunlight;
The trees glittered with the tumbling of leaves;
The sidewalks shone like alleys of dropped maple leaves,
And the houses ran along them laughing out of square, open windows.
Under a tree in the park,
Two little boys, lying flat on their faces,
Were carefully gathering red berries
To put in a pasteboard box.
Some day there will be no war,
Then I shall take out this afternoon
And turn it in my fingers,
And remark the sweet taste of it upon my palate,
And note the crisp variety of its flights of leaves.
To-day I can only gather it
And put it into my lunch-box,
For I have time for nothing
But the endeavour to balance myself
Upon a broken world.
This week's Poetry Friday Round-Up is being hosted by Kelly at Crossover.


  1. Gorgeous. I love Lowell's work, and was just reading her poem "The Letter" the other day. I hadn't seen this one yet, though. Thanks for posting it.

  2. Love the pic, love the poem. Love how they both make me FEEL. Isn't that the goal of art?? (At least it is for me. :)

  3. I too picked a melancholy poem today. Your question is right on the money. What IS it about September?

    Thanks for sharing this one.

  4. I'm feeling the same way about a someday with no war...I WANT to believe, but somehow it doesn't seem possible...

  5. Thanks everyone. Melancholia shared is a little less melancholy! Let's go out this weekend and make it a point to get away from the mental turmoil! Who's ready for some fun?