He did not write specifically for this year, of course.
by William Cullen Bryant
A power is on the earth and in the air,
→From which the vital spirit shrinks afraid,
→And shelters him in nooks of deepest shade,
From the hot steam and from the fiery glare.
Look forth upon the earth—her thousand plants
→Are smitten; even the dark sun-loving maize
→Faints in the field beneath the torrid blaze;
The herd beside the shaded fountain pants;
For life is driven from all the landscape brown;
→The bird hath sought his tree, the snake his den,
→The trout floats dead in the hot stream, and men
Drop by the sunstroke in the populous town:
→As if the Day of Fire had dawned, and sent
→Its deadly breath into the firmament.
July 31, 2011 – Today’s poem appears in Poems, published by University of Michigan. Read more about this book.