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No Winter In Los Angeles

The older I get, the more interested I am in poetry. That’s why it’s a funny coincidence that a sweet little poem caught the ear while watching a (fantastic and underrated) show about older people, Getting On.

As a part of their final season, one of the main minor characters passes away. They were beloved by all and, throughout the three bittersweet seasons, this person was a constant of love. To celebrate the person’s life, Nurse Didi (Niecy Nash) reads a poem at the funeral. It’s called “No Winter In Los Angeles” and was written by August Wilhelm Wern, an early twentieth century everyman and poet who moved to Southern California from Europe. The poem is one of loss and life, a celebration of that antithetical climate in the part of the world. It’s as joyous as it is confused, as much about living as it is about dying.

Because it is Winter and actually cold in Los Angeles, I wanted to share this poem as 2015 closes. It’s a sweet one. Let it bring you some cheer as we enter a new year.

There is no winter here!
With joy we hail October showers,
That bring us bright and fragrant flowers.
Poinsettias glow with scarlet pride,
That always cheer the Christmas-tide,
When Santa doth appear.

There is no winter here!
With king Zeus’s rain and sunshine’s mirth,
All seeds spring forth from mother earth,
Soon hills and valleys clad in green,
Blend with the shrub and foliage sheen,
And buttercups appear.

There is no winter here!
We see it only far away,
On mountain tops in white array,
On which the sunbeam’s evening glow,
A wondrous rose-tint doth bestow,
That doth the valleys cheer!

There is no winter here!
The hyacinth of various hue,
And fragrant violets fresh and blue,
Chrysanthemums for cheerfulness,
And roses in all loveliness,
We cherish and revere.

There is no winter here!
The golden orange bright and sweet,
In all its taste and form replete,
The lemon and the orange bloom,
Exhale sweet nectarious perfume,
That fills the atmosphere.

There is no winter here!
The meadow larks return again,
With morning calls and sweet refrain.
Sweet notes of mockingbirds do ring,
Both night and day in caroling,
We dearly love to hear.

There is no winter here!
What joy and pleasure are revealed,
With children in a poppy field.
Grand nature doth its power unfold,
And energies of young and old;
With angels all compeer.

Photo via.

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