To a Chrysanthemum found standing alone in a November garden
Chrysanthemum beloved, The earth is bare and cold; The withered leaves are flying, And rustling in the mold. The sunbeams pale are glinting Through the branches bare and wet, And resting on thy proud, bright head As a royal coronet.
Over the frosty meadow Where it slopes to meet the stream, The birds are piping sadly— Perhaps of Spring they dream, When the young leaves dance to music, Unknown to frost and cold; But thou no place for sadness hast, In thy heart of burnished gold.
Queen of the gorgeous Autumn Fairer than all the flowers That fling their perfume to the air Through summer’s sultry hours— May we in our Autumn season Far from our spring removed, Like thee, all-fearless stand and wait, Chrysanthemum beloved!
Chrysanthemum displays were a popular autumn event in Branch Brook Park during much of the twentieth century.
Typescripts of this and other poems by Emilie Fichter Cadmus are preserved in the New Jersey Historical Society’s collections.
Summer is dying—in the long wet grass The filmy cobwebs lay: Time is flying—for the cricket chirped At the close of the shortening day. Summer is dying—there’s an Autumn haze Beyond the sun’s bright sheen; The wind is sighing—‘tis the voice of Death That speaks through the waving green.
Shadows are lengthening across the sky, And trees have doffed their frocks of youthful green For robes of richer hue, while in between The clustered stars an opal moon gleams high Above the woods where sleeping violets lie Tucked in their leafy beds; the winds are keen With earthy smells, and everywhere are seen The last gifts of a summer soon to die.
Death! Yet how unlike other ends this one. With tenderness old summer decks each tree In brightest raiment, and with fragrant breath, Whispering softly that her life is done, She gently falls asleep: we hardly see That she has gone, so beautiful her death.
Manuscripts of verses by Emilie Fichter Cadmus and her daughter Mildred Cadmus Childs are preserved in the collections of the New Jersey Historical Society.
The sonnet by Newark Evening News editor George Bancroft Duren was included in his 1921 collection Written in Sand.