Graphic from the book for the top of even-numbered pages

Cutting the Corn

The morning glows on marching rows
      Of weary, tattered corn;
The landscape looms with draggled plumes
      And garments frayed and torn.
            The day of doom is rising high
            When all the cornfield soldiers die.
 
Scream, ravens, scream, the summer dream
      Shall crumble in the breeze;
Stare, red-eyed day, with sickly ray,
      Above the dogwood trees.
            The cringing nymphs are terror dumb,
            The harvest of the corn has come.
 
Trail tangled silken sheen no more;
      Blue velvet blossoms bleed and die;
For, crashing through your bosom's core,
      The doom shall smite you, hip and thigh.
            A, tear or two of sweetened dew
            The mourning year shall weep for you.
 
The farm boy stands with eager hands,
      That clasp the bluish blade;
Then right and left the stacks are cleft,
      And now a wigwam's made.
            And like an Indian village rise
            The yellow tents before our eyes.
___C. L. Edson
 
Sunflowers, A Book of Kansas Poems
Selected by Willard Wattles
pages 91-92
(Chicago: A. C. McClurg. 1916)
 
November 3, 2001 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas / howell@kotn.org

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