Winter

The small wind whispers through the leafless hedge
Most sharp and chill, where the light snowy flakes
Rest on each twig and spike of withered sedge,
Resembling scattered feathers; — vainly breaks
The pale split sunbeam through the frowning cloud,
On Winter’s frowns below — from day to day
Unmelted still he spreads his hoary shroud,
In dithering pride on the pale traveler’s way,
Who, croodling, hastens from the storm behind
Fast gathering deep and black, again to find
His cottage-fire and corner’s sheltering bounds;
Where, haply, such uncomfortable days
Make musical the wood-sap’s frizzling sounds,
And hoarse loud bellows puffing up the blaze.

John Clare

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