Sweetness accumulates like winter snow,
yet golden grain replaces crystal ice
on meadows— yellowed now with dying glow:
millet, rye and corn; oats, hay, wheat and rice
stand ready for reaping and winnowing…
and what mortal sweat sowed, mortal sweat reaps.
No seed survives the expected threshing
except what gentle hand selects and keeps,
to be next spring’s grasses, and next year’s bread—
a whole year glimpsed dimly in sickle’s arc.
Surprises well up from living and dead,
yet joy survives in the on-rushing dark,
and feasting follows such heavy toil:
bellies sit sated by hands in black soil.
The hymn for Lughnasadh should be ready by tomorrow, after another edit.