Tall pine trees stand beside the tranquil lake, Their needles whisper in the gentle breeze. Trunk and branches sway just as they please, A soft susurrus in the wind to make. While high above the summer sun’s rays beat To scorch the earth and turn the grass to brown. Grey smoke arises from the hill’s stark crown: Flames echo there the searing solar heat. Yet soon enough, the seasons' course will turn: Long winter nights will close in over all. Deep snows atop these mountains then shall fall To cool the land which months ago did burn. And through it all—fierce heat or winter's sleep— The pine trees still their quiet vigil keep.