Villanelle [poem by Agnes Neale]

[Editor: This poem by Agnes Neale was published in Shadows and Sunbeams (1890).]

Villanelle.

They are golden and purple and red,
There are blossoms all over the ground,
And the winter of dead things is dead;

The spring to the summer is wed,
Fair garlands lie scattered around:
They are golden and purple and red.

The magpie is warbling instead,
Where the wild winds no longer resound,
And the winter of dead things is dead.

Bright Flora’s rich treasures are shed
O’er valley and hillock and mound:
They are golden and purple and red.

Mourn not for the years that are fled,
For the years that have passed without sound,
For the winter of dead things is dead;

And blossom to blossom has led
Through life in a beautiful sound;
They are golden and purple and red,
And the winter of dead things is dead.



Source:
Agnes Neale, Shadows and Sunbeams, Adelaide: Burden & Bonython, 1890, page 54

Editor’s notes:
This poem has an unusual structure: Most of the stanzas consist of three lines; however, the last stanza has four lines.

o’er = over (pronounced the same as “oar”, “or”, and “ore”)

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