Collected Poems of John Holmes
Holmes, John A., Jr.
Once, in younger days, when I was tramping country roads
All joyously, and whistling as I went,
Not caring where the way led on
But following my fancy's idle bent,
I chanced to pass a long red garden wall
And on the heavy summer air
There came the rich sweet smell
Of many intermingled flowers growing there.
And curious, I climbed to see the place.
The branches of a gnarled old tree
Gave footing, and I peered from leaves
To see what sort of garden there might be.
I saw the gravelled paths that ran
In even lines to cut the jonquils and the phlox
In squares, and saw the plots of green
Where roses grew, and hollyhocks.
And at the opposite side, two cedar trees
Made splotches black against the wall,
And two great urns on either side
Guarded the fountain's splash and fall.
And sunlight glinted on the shallow pool.
Above a long stone bench the trees were sighing
And below - a woman crouched upon the stone. There came
Faintly to my ears the muffled sound of crying.