Archive for June 7th, 2020

Sunday, 7 June 2020

Black and White by Harold Henry Abbott

I met a man along the road
⁠⁠To Withernsea;
Was ever anything so dark, so pale
⁠⁠As he?
His hat, his clothes, his tie, his boots
⁠Were black as black
⁠⁠Could be,
And midst of all was a cold white face,
And eyes that looked wearily.

The road was bleak and straight and flat
⁠⁠To Withernsea,
Gaunt poles with shrilling wires their weird
⁠⁠Did dree;
On the sky stood out, on the swollen sky
⁠The black blood veins
⁠⁠Of tree
After tree, as they beat from the face
Of the wind which they could not flee.

And in the fields along the road
⁠⁠To Withernsea,
Swart crows sat huddled on the ground
While overhead the seamews wheeled, and skirled
⁠⁠In glee;
But the black cows stood, and cropped where they stood,
⁠⁠And never heeded thee,
O dark pale man, with the weary eyes,
⁠⁠On the road to Withernsea.

From: Walters, L D’O, The Year’s At the Spring: An Anthology of Recent Poetry, 1920, Brentano’s: New York, pp. 126-127.

Date: 1920

By: Harold Henry Abbott (1891-1976)