The birds are a-chirping, tweeting and twirping,
leaving their places, others' usurping,
bickering, quarrelling, with snicker and song,
their wings all a-flicker as their notes carry long.
As time measures beats and wind measures gusts,
the birds are a-bobble with a bobbing of thrust,
sailing and soaring with yearning and yaw,
snipping their prey with sharp beak and claw.
Alas, no more the morning light
will catch the eye and spark to sight
the verdant earth and azure blue
and every other rainbow hue
that vests the world and makes it bright,
alas, no more the morning light
will understanding's power fire
with vision and with heart's desire,
with waking thought and morning grace
as sunlight gladdens loving face;
instead the darkness, old and deep,
shall turn your eye and heart to sleep
and dreams no more shall haunt your brain,
nor tragic hopes, nor sorrow's pain,
but somewhere, lost in shaded isles,
your thought will stop and rest a while.