The New Year
He was the one man I met up in the woods
That stormy New Year’s morning; and at first sight,
Fifty yards off, I could not tell how much
Of the strange tripod was a man. His body,
Bowed horizontal, was supported equally
By legs at one end, by a rake at the other:
Thus he rested, far less like a man than
His wheel-barrow in profile was like a pig.
But when I saw it was an old man bent,
At the same moment came into my mind
The games at which boys bend thus, High-Cockalorum,
Or Fly-the-garter, and Leap-frog. At the sound
Of footsteps he began to straighten himself;
His head rolled under his cape like a tortoise’s;
He took an unlit pipe out of his mouth
Politely ere I wished him “A Happy New Year,”
And with his head cast upward sideways
So far as I could hear through the tree’s roar –
“Happy New Year, and may it come fastish, too,”
While I strode by and he turned to raking leaves.
Churlish of me; who am I to have a problem with line 8? I do so wish to put commas , between His wheel-barrow , in profile, was like a pig but I daren’t!! Or maybe the word ‘he’ between profile and was……. I have to continue to struggle with it…………I know it follows the ‘he’ in previous line. I just hope it is a missing misprint. Oh the simple trials of reading and editing!
Anyway, if anyone is really reading this: Happy New Year!
also tagged as seasons