Martin Robertson

Now and Then


The bare trunks of the beech-trees

rise out of the bluebell-lake,

and everywhere the clear green

(soft and strong as a child’s skin)

of earliest summer.  This is

life, which live things by nature

(their nature, its own) forsake.

Does it matter?

Aconite, snowdrop, give place to primrose,

bluebell to buttercup, dog-rose.

Flower-seasons return

but not the season’s flowers.

And why should we mourn?

Why accept the pattern

for these, question ours?

It matters and doesn’t matter.