Arts and Entertainment

The Poplar by Richard Aldington |

Why do you always stand there shivering

Between the white stream and the road?

The people pass through the dust

On bicycles, in carts, in motor-cars;

The waggoners go by at dawn;

The lovers walk on the grass path at night.

Stir from your roots, walk, poplar!

You are more beautiful than they are.

I know that the white wind loves you,

Is always kissing you and turning up

The white lining of your green petticoat.

The sky darts through you like blue rain,

And the grey rain drips on your flanks

And loves you.

And I have seen the moon

Slip his silver penny into your pocket

As you straightened your hair;

And the white mist curling and hesitating

Like a bashful lover about your knees.

I know you, poplar;

I have watched you since I was ten.

But if you had a little real love,

A little strength,

You would leave your nonchalant idle lovers

And go walking down the white road

Behind the waggoners.

There are beautiful beeches

Down beyond the hill.

Will you always stand there shivering?

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