Fragrant Quote for December 29th, 2012- The Yule Logs Song by Harriet Prescot Spofford



Berliner Salon mit Kaminfeuer
The Yule Logs Song by Harriet Prescot Spofford

And this is the song the yule-log sang:
"Far in forest glades I grew,
Fed on draughts of noontide dew;
Passed the spotted snake's low lair,
Passed the browsing of the bear,
Fresher branches thrust each year,
Passed the antler of the deer,
Till space and sun and solitude
Made me king of all the wood.
"Then, my lower branches laid
In a mighty depth of shade,
Glad my tops the sun descried
Coursing up the great earth's side,
Knew the cloud's phantasmal forms,
Wrestled with a thousand storms,
Proudly bore victorious scars,
And measured lances with the stars!
"Twice a hundred years the snow
Her white and glimmering veils did throw
Round me; moonbeams touched my spires
With a light of frosty fires;
Knee-deep in the summer fern
Twice a hundred years return,
And into leaf my full plumes burst
Green as when they bourgeoned first.
"Spices of the sun-soaked wood
Rose about me where I stood;
Gums their richest resin cast
On every wind that wandered past;
Blossoms shed their petals sweet
In balmy drifts about my feet;
Berried fragrance filled the gloom,
And the wild grape's ambrosial bloom.
"Here the bee went blundering by
Honey-drunk, the butterfly
Flittered,— ah, what songs I heard
Shrilling from the building bird!
How all little life did house
Securely in my sheltering boughs
That drew the green walls close when there
The great hawk hung in upper air!
"Still the dawn, the star-flame old,
That steeped me through and through, I
hold,
The gladness wrought in every root
While the wood-thrush blew his flute,
And music ordering all my art
With sorrow fit to break the heart
When the summer night was still
And far off mourned the whippoorwill.
"Now, my wealth of centuried hours,—
Memory of summer showers,
Bloom and song and leaf and wing,—
Upon this yule-tide hearth I fling.
All the life that filled my year
I bring back to the Giver here,
Burning gladly in His name
The hoarded sunshine of my flame!"
And the children listened, but all was still;
A core of heat was the yule-log's heart, And into the ashes the live coals dropped
Like rubies that flash and break apart; And the shadows skimmed up the darkening wall,
And the wind brought a clamor of music near,
And the stars themselves bent down to hear,
While out in the valley far below
The peal of the Christmas-bells rang clear.