Neighbors have come to mow my ragged field,
And three old horses bring the autumn home.
Now the blond waving grasses must come down,
And all the tasseled splendor has to yield.
Goodby to summer's feasts and variations:
Two months ago there burst into great praises.
White as enamel, in rich constellations,
A sky of stars flung down to earth as daisies.
When they went out, the fireflies were showing;
The green field pulsed with intermittent fire,
And the cats crept a jungle of desire
After these softest stars within the mowing.
Goodbye to ringing of the sumptuous changes --
To black-eyed Susans, paintbrushes and plantain,
Clear buttercups and cloudy asters, mullein.
Goodbye and praise to the high-summer ranges.
Now all those stars are altered in their course,
And the rich field cut back to rock and root;
My neighbors with three autumnal horses
Cut down the ghosts of summer with the fruit.
Winter, be gentle to the earth you keep,
To buried root and all that creeps and flies,
While overhead your dazzling daisy skies
Flower in the cold, bright mowing that will keep.
May Sarton, As Does New Hampshire