"The Beautiful Changes"

By Richard Wilbur

One wading a Fall meadow finds on all sides   

The Queen Anne’s Lace lying like lilies 

On water; it glides 

So from the walker, it turns 

Dry grass to a lake, as the slightest shade of you   

Valleys my mind in fabulous blue Lucernes. 


The beautiful changes as a forest is changed   

By a chameleon’s tuning his skin to it;   

As a mantis, arranged 

On a green leaf, grows 

Into it, makes the leaf leafier, and proves   

Any greenness is deeper than anyone knows. 


Your hands hold roses always in a way that says   

They are not only yours; the beautiful changes   

In such kind ways,   

Wishing ever to sunder 

Things and things’ selves for a second finding, to lose   

For a moment all that it touches back to wonder.

Adam Thompson