Now they are all stripped clean ready for spring. How beautiful the twigs! It almost seems A sacrilege to think how time will bring The fragile leaves of unsubstantial dreams. Oh they will come, and joy be born of them; But surely bare truth is the apothegm. For all their frippery is only known Through the stark framework that outlasts delight, The shapely beauty fashioned upon bone, The soundness of the mind in fancy's flight. Now is the time to look and look again And fix the heart on strengths that will remain.