My Seasons

25 Jul 2023 | Humankind | 0 comments

This is the weather the cuckoo likes, and so do I

When showers betumble the chestnut spikes and nestlings fly

And the little brown nightingale bills his best,

And they sit outside at the Traveller’s Rest,

And maids come forth sprig-muslin dressed,

And citizens dream of the south and west, and so do I.


     This is the weather the family craves and so do I

     When sunlight dapples the lapping waves and seagulls cry,

     And children scamper along the shore

     Clad in shorts and nothing more,

     And Grannies in deckchairs gently snore

     And wake expecting tea at four, and so do I.


This is the weather the shepherd shuns, and so do I

When beeches drip in browns and duns and thresh and ply

And hill-hid tides throb throe on throe

And meadow rivulets overflow

And drops on gate-bars hang in a row

And rooks in families homeward go, and so do I.


     This is the weather most people hate and so do I

     When mornings are dark till half past eight and cold winds sigh,

     And purple clouds bode sleet or snow

     And leafless trees stand row on row

     And frozen streams no longer flow,

     And cars with flat batteries refuse to go, and so do I!


Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), Weathers, 1922. and Harry Payne (1944 – ), Southwell.

Notes from the Compiler

Born in Dorset and trained as an architect, Thomas Hardy saw himself more as a poet than the novelist who wrote 'Far from the Madding Crowd' (1874) and 'Tess of the d'Urbervilles' (1891). He composed verses 1 & 3 above when he was 82 years old. It was first published in the 'Good Housing' magazine in May 1922. Harry Payne (Southwell) has added verses 2 & 4 and, like Hardy, writes of his moods and feelings.


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