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Tanka

Sadakichi Hartmann
I. 

Winter? Spring? Who knows? 
White buds from the plumtrees wing 
And mingle with the snows. 
No blue skies these flowers bring, 
Yet their fragrance augurs Spring. 

II. 

Oh, were the white waves, 
Far on the glimmering sea 
That the moonshine laves, 
Dream flowers drifting to me,—
I would cull them, love, for thee. 

III. 

Moon, somnolent, white, 
Mirrored in a waveless sea, 
What fickle mood of night 
Urged thee from heaven to flee 
And live in the dawnlit sea? 

IV. 

Like mist on the leas, 
Fall gently, oh rain of Spring 
On the orange trees 
That to Ume's casement cling—
Perchance, she'll hear the love-bird sing. 

V. 

Though love has grown cold 
The woods are bright with flowers, 
Why not as of old 
Go to the wildwood bowers 
And dream of--bygone hours! 

VI. 

Tell, what name beseems 
These vain and wandering days! 
Like the bark of dreams 
That from souls at daybreak strays 
They are lost on trackless ways.

This poem is in the public domain.

This poem is in the public domain.

Sadakichi Hartmann