Friday, 18 July 2014

Afternoon on a Hill

Landscape; from Bartholomaeus Anglicus,
All the Proprytees of Thynges, Westminster 1495.

I suppose some modern folk may look at the name Edna St. Vincent Millay, or the rhymes with which this poem is crafted, and roll their eyes. That's too bad, in my opinion. Over the years I have returned to "Afternoon on a Hill" many times because it takes me out of my busy urban life and up to a quiet hillside.

There I take a calm, then a calmer breath, find a moment to notice my own and the world's resilience and renewal, and return in time down that hill refreshed and happy. I hope that you may find your own hill and your own quiet moment with this poem.

Afternoon on a Hill

Edna St. Vincent Millay, 1892 - 1950

I will be the gladdest thing
   Under the sun!
I will touch a hundred flowers
   And not pick one.

I will look at cliffs and clouds
   With quiet eyes,
Watch the wind bow down the grass,
   And the grass rise.

And when lights begin to show
   Up from the town,
I will mark which must be mine,
   And then start down!