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Autumn in Tasmania

WHITE everlastings star the peaks again
Where mountain moss her living carpet spreads
And through the eaves of hollow runnel-beds
The soft sad winds of mourning March complain.
But yesterday through aisles of tasselled grain
Came Ceres singing — now grey gully-heads
Give back her grief. Like one in sleep she treads
And calls for lost Persephone in vain.

No glad voice answers. Olive-shadowed musk
Sheds funeral incense over ridge and fell
Where ebbed reluctant day; now like a ghost
A haggard moon rides up the eastern coast,
And through the silence, like a passing bell,
A bittern booms across the caverned dusk.

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