Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
For though men are light-hearted when they have strong drink,
A year passes swiftly, never bringing the same;
Beginning and ending seldom take the same form.
(497 - 499)
And so that Yule went by, and the year ensuing,
Each season in turn following the other.
After Christmas came mean-spirited Lent,
That tries the body with fish and plainer nourishment.
(498 - 501)
But then the weather on earth battles with winter,
The cold shrinks downwards, clouds rise higher,
And shed sparkling rain in warming showers,
Falling on smiling plains where flowers unfold.
Both open fields and woodlands put on green dress;
Birds hasten to build, and rapturously sing
For joy of gentle summer that follows next
on the slopes.
And flowers bud and blossom
In hedgerows rich with growth,
And many splendid songs
From woodlands echo forth.
(504 - 515)