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    Ballade of Autumn

    by Andrew Lang
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    We built a castle in the air,
    In summer weather, you and I,
    The wind and sun were in your hair,--
    Gold hair against a sapphire sky:
    When Autumn came, with leaves that fly
    Before the storm, across the plain,
    You fled from me, with scarce a sigh--
    My Love returns no more again!

    The windy lights of Autumn flare:
    I watch the moonlit sails go by;
    I marvel how men toil and fare,
    The weary business that they ply!
    Their voyaging is vanity,
    And fairy gold is all their gain,
    And all the winds of winter cry,
    "My Love returns no more again!"

    Here, in my castle of Despair,
    I sit alone with memory;
    The wind-fed wolf has left his lair,
    To keep the outcast company.
    The brooding owl he hoots hard by,
    The hare shall kindle on thy hearth-stane,
    The Rhymer's soothest prophecy,--*
    My Love returns no more again!


    Lady, my home until I die
    Is here, where youth and hope were slain:
    They flit, the ghosts of our July,
    My Love returns no more again!

    *Thomas of Ercildoune.
    If you're writing a Ballade of Autumn essay and need some advice, post your Andrew Lang essay question on our Facebook page where fellow bookworms are always glad to help!

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