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Soon as gentle breezes bring
News of Winter's vanishing,
And the children build their bowers,
Sticking kerchief-pots of mold
All about their full-blown flowers,
Thick as sheep in shepherd's fold!
With the proudest thou art there,
Mantling in the tiny square.
Often have I sighed to measure
By myself a lonely pleasure,
Sighed to think, I read a book
Only read, perhaps, by me;
Yet I long could overlook
Thy bright coronet and thee,
And thy arch and wily ways,
And thy store of other praise.

Blithe of heart, from week to week
Thou dost play at hide-and-seek;
While the patient primrose sits
Like a beggar in the cold,
Thou, a flower of wiser wits,

Slipp'st into thy sheltered hold;
Bright as any of the train

When ye all are out again.

Thou art not beyond the moon,

But a thing "beneath our shoon :"*
Let, as old Magellan did,
Others roam about the sea;
Build who will a pyramid;

Praise it is enough for me,

If there be but three or four

Who will love my little flower.

THE WATERFALL AND THE EGLANTINE.

"BEGONE, thou fond presumptuous elf,"
Exclaimed a thundering voice,

"Nor dare to thrust thy foolish self

Between me and my choice!"

A falling Water swoln with snows
Thus spake to a poor Briar rose,
That, all bespattered with his foam,
And dancing high, and dancing low,
Was living, as a child might know,
In an unhappy home.

"Dost thou presume my course to blook
Off, off! or, puny thing!

I'll hurl thee headlong with the rock

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To which thy fibres cling."

*Scottice, shoes.

The Flood was tyrannous and strong;
The patient Briar suffered long,
Nor did he utter groan or sigh,

Hoping the danger would be past:
But, seeing no relief, at last.

He ventured to reply.

"Ah!" said the Briar, "blame me not;

Why should we dwell in strife?

We who in this, our natal spot,

Once lived a happy life!

You stirred me on my rocky bed

What pleasure through my veins you spread!

The Summer long, from day to day,

My leaves you freshened and bedewed;

Nor was it common gratitude

That did your cares repay.

"When Spring came on with bud and bell,

Among these rocks did I

Before you hang my wreaths, to tell
That gentle days were nigh!

And, in the sultry Summer hours,

I sheltered you with leaves and flowers;
And in my leaves-now shed and gone,
The linnet lodged, and for us two
Chaunted his pretty songs, when you
Had little voice or none.

"But now proud thoughts are in your breastWhat grief is mine you see.

Ah! would you think, even yet how blest

Together we might be!

Though of both leaf and flower bereft,

Some ornaments to me are left

Rich store of scarlet hips is mine,

With which I, in my humble way,

Would deck you many a Winter's day,
A happy Eglantine !"

What more he said I cannot tell.

The Torrent thundered down the dell
With unabating haste;

I listened, nor ought else could hear;
The Briar quaked--and much I fear
Those accents were his last.

THE OAK AND THE BROOM.

A PASTORAL.

HIS simple truths did Andrew glean
Beside the babbling rills;

A careful student he had been
Among the woods and hills.

Soon as gentle breezes bring
News of Winter's vanishing,
And the children build their bowers,
Sticking kerchief-pots of mold
All about their full-blown flowers,
Thick as sheep in shepherd's fold!
With the proudest thou art there,
Mantling in the tiny square.
Often have I sighed to measure
By myself a lonely pleasure,
Sighed to think, I read a book
Only read, perhaps, by me;
Yet I long could overlook
Thy bright coronet and thee,
And thy arch and wily ways,
And thy store of other praise.

Blithe of heart, from week to week
Thou dost play at hide-and-seek;
While the patient primrose sits

Like a beggar in the cold,
Thou, a flower of wiser wits,

Slipp'st into thy sheltered hold;
Bright as any of the train

When ye all are out again.

Thou art not beyond the moon,
But a thing "beneath our shoon:'
Let, as old Magellan did,
Others roam about the sea;
Build who will a pyramid;
Praise it is enough for me,
If there be but three or four
Who will love my little flower.

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The Flood was tyrannous and strong;
The patient Briar suffered long,
Nor did he utter groan or sigh,

Hoping the danger would be past:
But, seeing no relief, at last
He ventured to reply.

"Ah!" said the Briar, " blame me not;

Why should we dwell in strife?

We who in this, our natal spot,

Once lived a happy life!

You stirred me on my rocky bed

What pleasure through my veins you spread!

The Summer long, from day to day,

My leaves you freshened and bedewed;

Nor was it common gratitude

That did your cares repay.

"When Spring came on with bud and bell,

Among these rocks did I

Before you hang my wreaths, to tell
That gentle days were nigh!

And, in the sultry Summer hours,

I sheltered you with leaves and flowers;
And in my leaves-now shed and gone,
The linnet lodged, and for us two
Chaunted his pretty songs, when you
Had little voice or none.

"But now proud thoughts are in
What grief is mine you see.

your

breast

Ah! would you think, even yet how blest

Together we might be!

Though of both leaf and flower bereft,

Some ornaments to me are left

Rich store of scarlet hips is mine,

With which I, in my humble way,

Would deck you many a Winter's day,
A happy Eglantine !"

What more he said I cannot tell.

The Torrent thundered down the dell
With unabating haste;

I listened, nor ought else could hear;
The Briar quaked--and much I fear
Those accents were his last.

THE OAK AND THE BROOM.

A PASTORAL.

HIS simple truths did Andrew glean
Beside the babbling rills;

A careful student he had been
Among the woods and hills.

One Winter's night, when through the trees
The wind was thundering, on his knees
His youngest born did Andrew hold:
And while the rest, a ruddy quire,
Were seated round their blazing fire,
This tale the shepherd told.

"I saw a crag, a lofty stone

As ever tempest beat!

Out of its head an Oak had grown,

A Broom out of its feet.

The time was March, a cheerful noon

The thaw-wind, with the breath of June,
Breathed gently from the warm south-west:
When, in a voice sedate with age,
This Oak, a giant and a sage,

His neighbour thus addressed:

Eight weary weeks, through rock and clay, Along this mountain's edge,

The frost hath wrought both night and day, Wedge driving after wedge.

Look up! and think, above your head

What trouble, surely, will be bred;

Last night I heard a crash-'tis true,
The splinters took another road-

I see them yonder-what a load

For such a thing as you!

'You are preparing, as before, To deck your slender shape;

And yet, just three years back—no moreYou had a strange escape.

Down from yon cliff a fragment broke;

It came, you know, with fire and smoke,
And hitherward it bent its way:

This ponderous block was caught by me,
And o'er your head, as you may see,
'Tis hanging to this day!

< The thing had better been asleep,
Whatever thing it were,

Or breeze, or bird, or dog, or sheep,
That first did plant you there.

For you and your green twigs decoy
The little witless shepherd-boy

To come and slumber in your bower;

And, trust me, on some sultry noon,

Both you and he, Heaven knows how soon!

Will perish in one hour.

'From me this friendly warning take '—

The Broom began to doze,

And thus to keep herself awake

Did gently interpose:

'My thanks for your discourse are due;

That it is true, and more than true,

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