Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Poem of the week: Autumn Rain by DH Lawrence

Intensely alive to the details of the natural world, Lawrence here combines the energy of his free verse with formal invention 

Fallen leaves in autumn.
Fallen leaves in autumn. Photograph: Tim Ockenden/PA
Autumn Rain

The plane leaves
fall black and wet
on the lawn;

the cloud sheaves
in heaven’s fields set
droop and are drawn

in falling seeds of rain;
the seed of heaven
on my face

falling — I hear again
like echoes even
that softly pace

heaven’s muffled floor,
the winds that tread
out all the grain

in the sheaves of pain

caught up aloft:
the sheaves of dead
men that are slain

now winnowed soft
on the floor of heaven;
manna invisible

of all the pain
here to us given;
finely divisible
falling as rain.


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