A December Morning

By James Power Irvine

You have seen a winter morning, the horizon dull and low,
When the earth and all belonging, lay a level waste of snow.

In the bleak and empty distance there was naught of all we knew,
Save the gaunt and naked poplars to arrest the wandering view.

It was as a stretch of desert, with no sign of life thereon,—
The familiar hills and hollows, and the fields and fences gone.

Every road and lane and byway, far and near, were blotted out;
Hushed the sound of bells, and silent were the huntsman’s gun and shout;

E’en the axes of the choppers were unheard amidst the wood,
And in drifts the horse of Iron with his train imprisoned stood.

East and West, and North and Southward, mute and white the vastness lay,
Brooded dumb the low and sullen, blank infinitude of gray.