Mentre ci si scioglie dal caldo, ho trovato diverse poesie dedicate alla stagione invernale, vere e proprie odi al periodo dell’anno in cui la vita in fondo è meno difficile. Dell’estate, lasso di tempo alquanto noioso, c’è poco da dire a pensarci bene.
Ho trovato vari componimenti, ma quello che più mi è piaciuto, è questo dell’australiano (in realtà nato nel Devonshire nel 1821 ed emigrato successivamente in Australia) Samuel Prout Hill.
Leggetevela, per oggi altro non riuscivo a scrivere…
SEE! from the regions of the shivering North,
Pale Winter soars upon its snowy wings;
To chase dear mellow Autumn stalks he forth,
While o’er her charms his mantle now he flings.
His white hair matted with still whiter snow,
His chilling breath, cold — freezing all below,
And blighting each warm beam of you fair sun:
The elements around him wait, all pale;
The rain converted is to pelting hail,
As he goes forth his shivering course to run.
Where have thy beauties, glorious Nature, fled?
Where are those leafy bowers we loved so well?
All scared and yellow — emblems of the dead —
For Desolation triumph’d — and they fell.
Where are those streets, all thronged with happy faces?
Where are those charms which beautified the graces?
And painted life so cheerful and so gay?
You lazar-like old man now moves alone;
Cold and benum’d, he shivers out a groan,
As through the snow he roams the live-long day.
A houseless wanderer in his old age,
He envies not the joys his children knew;
They spurn’d him from their door, in furious rage,
And now pale, trembling, to the grave he flew.
The chilling blasts, as cold they sweep along,
Wave his grey hairs and freeze his tearful eyes;
His groans bear burden to their mournful song,
And sinking on the ground — he prays and dies.
But hark! from yonder far and shivering clime,
The brazen trumpet sounds the note of war;
The sleepy Russian rouses to the chime,
And echoes back the sound to lands afar.
To arms! to arms! to arms! the cry they raise,
Let cannon belch its bright and living blaze,
And blood-stain’d sabres answer to its sound:
Fight! fight! the Cossack shouts, and, shouting, dies.
On! on! the invader chief yet louder cries;
To Moscow, quick! the snow is on the ground.
How awful Moscow, was thy burning grave!
Splendid in ruins — City of the North;
Thy glory sinking but to shield thy brave,
And crush invasion as its pride burst forth.
May softest peace watch o’er thy ashes now,
Thou Nation’s glory! Tyrants curse thy fall:
It snatch’d the laurel from the Victor’s brow,
While Nature answer’d to thy dying call.
She sent white Winter, with its dreary snows,
To bury deep the joys one conquest raised;
To rouse the tyrant from his short repose,
On that red spot where late destruction blaz’d.
Oh! ever thus thy chilly lessons teach,
When man aspires to sever nations’ ties;
To aim at power that lies beyond his reach; —
Then war against him all ye northern skies!
Then name their names who fell midst that retreat,
Whose only bier and charnel-house were snow;
Let Moscow point to their cold winding-sheet,
And softly tell their wint’ry tale of woe.