The Winter Wind.
The winter wind! e wh-e-e, e wh-e-e!
It bites and smites and chases me,
And pelts with boughs and shrieks with glee,
This winter wind so fierce and free;
Till wide-eyed stars so white and wee
Peer through the scud all fearsomely.
The love-warm rose no longer now
Clings fondly round fair nature’s brow;
But in its place the chill winds roam
Through locks as white as frozen foam.
The winter wind so fierce and free
Has wrought this change. Ah me! Ah me!
Her dress that once was green and bright
Is stiffened sheer and bleached to white.
And where did rose and lily be
Are flecks of frosty filagree.
His breath is death, his voice is dree,
This winter wind so fierce and free.
Louisa Lawson, “The Lonely Crossing” and Other Poems, Sydney: Dawn Office, , p. 36
dree = great, large; can also mean: dreary, tedious, tiresome, wearisome; to endure (especially to endure something which is burdensome, painful, or which causes suffering)
filagree = delicate, fine, and intricate ornamental works made from metal wire (usually gold or silver), with the wire being twisted into designs, patterns, or shapes; to decorate an object with delicate, fine, and intricate ornamentation made from twisted metal wire; a design which resembles such ornamental works
scud = clouds, mist, rain, or spray driven by the wind; a gust of wind; to move fast in a straight line when driven by the wind, or in a manner similar to being driven by the wind
wee = little, very small, diminutive, e.g. “the wee child” (the small child), “the wee hours of the morning” (the small hours of the morning, i.e. the early hours of the morning)