Orchard by Hilda Doolittle

Updated September 23, 2019 | Infoplease Staff


I saw the first pear
As it fell —
The honey-seeking, golden-banded,
The yellow swarm
Was not more fleet than I,
(Spare us from loveliness)
And I fell prostrate
You have flayed us
With your blossoms,
Spare us the beauty
Of fruit-trees.
The honey-seeking
Paused not,
The air thundered their song,
And I alone was prostrate.
O rough-hewn
God of the orchard,
I bring you an offering —
Do you, alone unbeautiful,
Son of the god,
Spare us from loveliness:
These fallen hazel-nuts,
Stripped late of their green sheaths,
Grapes, red-purple,
Their berries
Dripping with wine,
Pomegranates already broken,
And shrunken figs
And quinces untouched,
I bring you as offering.
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