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Slow spells his beads monotonous

To the soft western wind.

Cuckoo! cuckoo! he sings again:
His notes are void of art;

But simplest strains do soonest sound
The deep founts of the heart.

Good Lord, it is a gracious boon,

For thought-crazed wight like me, To smell again these summer flowers Beneath this summer tree;

To suck once more in every breath
Their little souls away,

And feed my fancy with fond dreams
Of youth's bright summer day.

Leaf, blossom, blade, hill, valley, stream,
The calm, unclouded sky,

Still mingle music with my dreams,
As in the days gone by.

When summer's loveliness and light
Fall round me dark and cold,
I'll bear indeed life's heaviest curse,-
A heart that hath waxed old.

-WILLIAM MOTHERWELL.

18. THE DEATH OF THE FLOWERS.

The melancholy days are come, the saddest of the year,

Of wailing winds, and naked woods, and meadows brown and sere.

Heaped in the hollows of the grove, the autumn leaves lie dead;

They rustle to the eddying gust, and to the rabbit's tread:

The robin and the wren are flown, and from the shrubs the jay,

And from the wood-top calls the crow through all the gloomy day.

Where are the flowers, the fair young flowers, that lately sprang and stood

In brighter light and softer airs, a beauteous sisterhood?

Alas! they all are in their graves, the gentle race of flowers

Are lying in their lowly beds with the fair and good of ours.

The rain is falling where they lie, but the cold November rain

Calls not from out the gloomy earth the lovely ones again.

The wind-flower and the violet, they perished long

ago,

And the brier-rose and the orchis died amid the

summer glow;

But on the hills the goldenrod, and the aster in the wood,

And the yellow sunflower by the brook, in autumn beauty stood,

Till fell the frost from the clear, cold heaven, as falls the plague on men,

And the brightness of their smile was gone from upland, glade, and glen.

And now when comes the calm, mild day, as still such days will come,

To call the squirrel and the bee from out their winter home;

When the sound of dropping nuts is heard, though all the trees are still,

And twinkle in the smoky light the waters of the rill, The south wind searches for the flowers whose

fragrance late he bore,

And sighs to find them in the wood, and by the stream no more.

And then I think of one who in her youthful beauty died,

The fair, meek blossom that grew up, and perished by my side.

In the cold, moist earth we laid her, when the forests cast the leaf,

And we wept that one so lovely should have a life so brief:

Yet not unmeet was it that one like that young friend of ours,

So gentle and so beautiful, should perish with the

flowers.

-WILLIAM CULLEN BRYANT.

19.

IT SNOWS.

"It snows!" cries the schoolboy, "Hurrah!" and his shout

Is ringing through parlor and hall,

While, swift as the wing of a swallow, he's out,
And his playmates have answered his call;
It makes the heart leap but to witness their joy,
Proud wealth has no pleasures, I trow,

Like the rapture that throbs in the heart of the boy
As he gathers his treasures of snow;

Then lay not the trappings of gold on thy heirs, While health, and the riches of nature are theirs.

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"It snows! sighs the imbecile, "Ah!" and his

breath

Comes heavy, as clogged with a weight;

While, from the pale aspect of nature in death,
He turns to the blaze of his grate,

And nearer and nearer his soft-cushioned chair
Is wheeled toward the life-giving flame;
He dreads a chill puff of the snow-burdened air,
Lest it wither his delicate frame;

Oh! small is the pleasure existence can give, When the fear we shall die only proves that we live!

"It snows!" cries the traveller, "Ho!" and the word

Has quickened his steed's lagging pace; The wind rushes by, but its howl is unheard, Unfelt the sharp drift in his face;

For bright through the tempest his own home appeared,

Ay, though leagues intervened, he can see; There's the clear, glowing hearth, and the table prepared,

And his wife with her babes at her knee:

Blest thought! how it lightens the grief-laden hour, That those we love dearest are safe from its power!

"It snows!" cries the belle, "Dear, how lucky! and turns

From her mirror to watch the flakes fall;

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Like the first rose of summer, her dimpled cheek burns,

While musing on sleigh-ride and ball;

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