The last lone aster in the wood has died,
And taken wings, and flown;
The sighing oaks, the evergreens' dark pride,
And shivering beeches, keep their leaves alone.
From the chill breath of late October's blast
That all the foliage seared,
Even the loyal gentian shrank at last,
And, gathering up her fringes, disappeared.
The wood is silent as an unswept lute;
Color and song have fled;
Only the brave black-alder's brilliant fruit
Lights the sear deadness with its living red.
But what is this wild fragrance that pervades
The air like incense-smoke?
Pungent as spices blown in tropic shades,
Subtle as some enchanter might evoke.
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