This starbreak is celestial air,
Just silver; earthlight, dying amber.
Underneath an arch of pallor
Summer keeps her brightened chamber.
Bright beauty of the risen dust
And deep flood-mark of beauty pressed
Up from earth in lovely flower,
High against my lonely breast;
Thou rhythm like the changing moon’s
The catch to which the waters play,
That as they kiss moon-silver sink,—
As soon to spurn the baffled clay;
Only before the waters fall
Is Paradise shore for gaining now.
The grasses drink the berry-bright dew;
The small fruits jewel all the bough.
Heart-breaking summer beyond taste,
Ripeness and frost are soon to know;
But might such color hold the west,
And time, and time, be honey-slow!
This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on July 17, 2021, by the Academy of American Poets.