(a) The autumn’ s harvest is being described in the first two lines.
(b) The person crossing the brook has to keep his head steady because he has weight on his head and he has to make sure that whatever he is carrying on his head should not fall down.
(c) A cider-press is a equipment or in this context, it can be a mill where equipments are employed to crush apples to extract their juices and make cider.
(d) The person who is sitting by the side of the cider-press is actually autumn, who is being personified as a woman in the poem. The poet says that autumn is patiently watching how the juice is being extracted from the apples by the cider-press for several hours and she is mesmerized by it.
(e) In the lines mentioned above, a metaphor is being used. Autumn is being compared to a gleaner who is carrying the leftover harvest on his head and thus has to keep his head steady while crossing the stream.
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