To the Autumn

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Sweet Sabbath of the year!
While evening lights decay,
Thy parting steps methinks I hear
Steal from the world away.

Amid thy silent bowers,
'Tis sad, but sweet, to dwell;
Where falling leaves and drooping flowers
Around me breathe farewell.

Along thy sunset skies
Their glories melt in shade,
And like the things we fondly prize,
Seem lovelier as they fade.

A deep and crimson streak
Thy dying leaves disclose;
As on consumption's waning cheek
'Mid ruin blooms the rose.

Thy scene each vision brings
Of beauty in decay;
Of fair and early faded things
Too exquisite to stay.

Of joys that come no more;
Of flowers whose bloom is fled;
Of farewells wept upon the shore;
Of friends estranged or dead.

Of all that now may seem
To memory's tearful eye,
The vanish'd beauty of a dream,
O'er which we gaze and sigh!

© James Montgomery