Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
Spring Sorrow
By Julia Cooley
THERE comes a time in the early spring of the year,
  Before the buds have broken,
When sorrow lays its hush upon the world
  In syllables unspoken:
Sorrow deep as the spheres of darkened moons,        5
  The sorrow that blindly knows
The futility of all unfolding, and the fading
  Of every flower that grows.
Cool is the earth with the drooping of unspilled rain,
  And the imminence of tears.        10
The buds lie under the stifling bark of the twigs,
  Suppressed with haunting fears.
The flowers are too deep beneath the fettered earth,
  Too closely bound in coil
To raise the petals of their deluding beauty        15
  Above the loosened soil.
The mighty winds of the winter have gone down—
  No breath of motion stirs.
There is no flame of impulse anywhere;
  Not even a bird’s wing whirs.        20
Weary is earth of the empty tumult of winter,
  Weary of the new weight
That presses against her heart for large release,
  Weary of futile freight.
These buds will blow away in the autumn twilight,        25
  Borne on the wind’s cold breath.
These flowers will add the shining of their petals
  To the mould of death.
The vast gray tragedy of life lies bare;
  No spring flowers cover it.        30
No network of blossoms hides it from the eyes,
  No light lies over it.
A sadness, a spring sadness, touches the world—
  The sorrow that blindly knows
The futility of all unfolding, and the fading        35
  Of every flower that grows.

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