On the road, one springtime day,
I saw along the leaf-hung rides
Hedges edged with flowering May,
Matched by the lilac in the woods.
Surely they looked like Christmas trees
Weighted with clustering summer snow:
Then white-laced parsley brought my eyes
Down to the verges strung below.
Pale lavender, the campion
Blew back and forth against the broom,
Whose yellow branches caught the sun
In miniature and let it stream.
A single poppy, here and there,
Foretold the scarlet lights of June
And took away a quick despair
At chestnut and at cherry gone.
The rides ahead loomed lofty, green:
Dappled with shade, a copper-beach
Glowed where oak and elm boughs twined
Beyond the rhododendron’s reach.
There, in that forest, time was still
Dark with the Romans tramping past
Moss-covered stones, which waited while
A soldier made his pack-strap fast.
All, in a way, was what it was;
AII as it would be long from now:
Flowers and trees continued, as
I marvelled at the hawthorn snow.