Cimmerian Summer

Cimmerian Summer

This lifeless gloom: is it the dusk?
This pale white disc: is it the moon?
Is this a mild day in November?
No: in the land of ceaseless mist
this is the sun; the afternoon;
the lightless first day of September.

Christina Egan © 2015


“ἔνθα δὲ Κιμμερίων ἀνδρῶν δῆμός τε πόλις τε,
ἠέρι καὶ νεφέλῃ κεκαλυμμένοι.”

There are the land and city of the Cimmerians,
wrapped in mist and cloud.”  

Homer, Odyssey, 11:14-15


“Britain is set in the Sea of Darkness.
It is a considerable island. This country is most fertile,
its inhabitants brave, active and enterprising….
but all is in the grip of perpetual winter.”

Muhammad al-Idrisi of Sicily, ca. 1154


Homer never ceases to inspire us. Incidentally, I saw a retelling of the Odyssey  last night, at a London playhouse, or rather, amphitheatre! (On this first day of September, the weather is in fact glorious.)

The memory of four clearly marked seasons, full of bright leaves and fruits, and the sorrow about the apparent confusion of the climate are depicted in My Pack of Cards.

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November (Im dunkelblauen Nebel)

November

Im dunkelblauen Nebel liegen
gelöst mein Haus und Park.
Mein Herz hat einen Traum erstiegen
und hebt sich still und stark.

Der Herbst hat Gold um Gold gewonnen
mit schmerzloser Gewalt.
Das Mondlicht ist für mich geronnen
zu lieblicher Gestalt.

Christina Egan © 2010

This must be one of the happiest late-autumn poems ever:
exuding peace, evoking beauty, steeped in blue and gold!