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Vae Victis!

Lord Alfred Douglas 1870 (Worcestershire) – 1945 (Lancing)

Here in this isle
The summer still lingers,
And Autumn's brown fingers
So busy the while
With the leaves in the north;
Are scarcely put forth
In this land where the sun still glows like an ember,.
In mid-November.

In England it's cold,
And the yellow and red
Of October have fled ;
And the sun is wet gold
Like an emperor weeping,
When Death goes a-reaping
All through his empire, merciless comer
The dead things of summer.

The sky has cried so
That the earth is all sodden,
With dead leaves in-trodden,
And the trees to and fro
Wave their arms in the air
In despair, in despair :
They are thinking of all the hot days that are over,
And the cows in the clover.

Here the roses are out,
And the sun at high noon
Makes the birds faint and swoon.
But the cricket's about
With his song, and the hum
Of the bees as they come
To feast at the honey-board laden and groaning,
Makes musical droning.

But vainly, alas !
Do I hide in the south,
Kiss close with my mouth
Red flowers, green grass,
For Autumn has found me
And thrown her arms around me.
She has breathed on my lips and I wander apart,
Dead leaves in my heart.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Lord Alfred Douglas

Lord Alfred Bruce Douglas, nicknamed Bosie, was a British author, poet and translator, better known as the friend and lover of the writer Oscar Wilde. Much of his early poetry was Uranian in theme, though he tended, later in life, to distance himself from both Wilde's influence and his own role as a Uranian poet. more…

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    "Vae Victis!" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 6 May 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/25994/vae-victis!>.

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