THE afternoon is slipping fast away, The sky is turning softer gray to gray, The hedgerows stand more black against the road, And heavy seems the last brought in cart-load.


The sunset crimsons back beyond the wood, The sickle moon will rise love where we stood. The warm red earth turns black in the far field, And day to dusk, and twilight now must yield.


The sheep are lying white against the hill. And out of sight one coughs and then is still. The gray of dusk is slipping into night, And cottage answers cottage with its light.


The wild duck flights across the darkening pond, A heron flaps away, then lights beyond, The water hen is running 'mongst the reeds, Each wild fowl seeking rest; no other needs.


The ploughman brings his horses down to drink, Cheery, though tired, standing on the brink, The day's work done, the wondrous night will come, When men and beast are foddered, then comes home.