The ivy and the holly
That stood on guard through the long winter
And held out in the hard times
Are now pushed aside by the brash young green
Of hazel and of ash,
Eager to show off their new beauty
And careless of all duty done
Through the long cold nights.
The beech meanwhile keeps all her children round her.
She did not let them fly off with the oak leaves
In the windy autumn,
However much they wished to go.
She now waits for the new brood to hatch and grow,
To take their brothers’ places.
However cold the nights
And dull the days,
As slow March plods along,
Spring will come,
And winter will take a rest.