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May Is Building Her House
Richard Le Gallienne


May is building her house. With apple blooms
            She is roofing over the glimmering rooms;
Of the oak and the beech hath she builded its beams,
            And, spinning all day at her secret looms,
With arras of leaves each wind-swayed wall
She pictureth over, and peopleth it all
            With echoes and dreams,
            And singing of streams.

May is building her house. Of petal and blade,
Of the roots of the oak is the flooring made,
            With a carpet of mosses and lichen and clover,
            Each small miracle over and over,
And tender, travelling green things strayed.

Her windows, the morning and evening star,
And her rustling doorways, ever ajar
            With the coming and going
            Of fair things blowing,
The threshold of the four winds are.

May is building her house. From the dust of things
She is making the songs and the flowers and the wings;
            From October's tossed and trodden gold
            She is making the young year out of the old;

                        Yea: out of winter's flying sleet
                        She is making all the summer sweet,
            And the brown leaves spurned of November's feet
She is changing back again to spring's.


This poem is in the public domain.

Richard Le Gallienne (1866 -  1947) was born in Liverpool, England. A contemporary of Oscar Wilde and W. B. Yeats, he was widely published but tended to be more of a romantic than his counterparts. He moved to the U.S. in 1903, hoping to breathe new life into his writing career, but his continued preference for sentimental styling kept him out of sync with American tastes of that time. He moved to Paris in 1927 and began writing a weekly column for the New York Sun, which was a perfect venue for his romantic style of writing . A compilation of some of those columns won Le Gallienne an award for "best book about France by a foreigner."  In the course of his life, Le Gallienne wrote nearly ninety books and innumerable articles.


Post New Comment:
May building a home...surely, as I have built many and saddened each time I left, an overshadowing of Camelot in the Merry month of May. Lovely.
Posted 05/16/2013 02:18 PM
Doesn't poetry like this just make you want to dance and sing a song of Spring?! 'She is making the young year out of the old' love it! 'from the dust of things' is another one of many great lines in this poem!
Posted 05/16/2013 08:19 AM
Janet Leahy:
Love the lilting music of this poem and it does seem May builds her house "from the dust of things."
Posted 05/16/2013 07:22 AM

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