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And all about my mother's door
Shine out its glittering bushes,
The mountain-water gushes.
And the bird that nestles in it;
The green and yellow linnet. Well, call the rose the queen of flowers,
And boast of that of Sharon, or lilies like to marble cups.
And the golden rod of Aaron.
Beloved of man and woman;
That groweth on the common. Oh the Broom, the yellow Broom,
The ancient poet sung it, And dear it is on summer days
To lie at rest among it!
THE BROOM.FLOWER. O THE Broom, the yellow Broom,
The ancient poet sung it,
To lie at rest among it.
The flowers have not their fellow;
The crimson and the yellow.
In luxury's silken fetters,
Are used for written letters.
In modern days or olden ;
No, not in the meadow, and not on the shore;
mate, No Eagle dwells here; he is lonely and great! Look, look how he sits! with his keen glancing eye, And his proud head thrown back, looking into the
Great bird of the wilderness! lonely and proud,
The Neuile looked up, the Nettle looked down, And graciously smiled on the simple clown: “ Thou knowest me well, Sir Clown," said he,
And 'tis meet that thou reverence one like me." Nothing at all the man replied, But he listed a scythe that was at his side, And he cut the Nettle up by the root, And trampled it under his heavy foot; And he saw where the Toad in its shadow lay, But he said not a word, and went his way.
THE BIRD OF PARADISE.
There was a Nettle both great and strong;
O LOVELY Bird of Paradise,
I'll go where thou dost go! Rise higher yet, and higher yet,
For a stormy wind doth blow. Now up above the tempest
We are sailing in the calm, Amid the golden sunshine,
And where the air is balm. See, far below us rolling,
The storm-cloud black and wide ; The fury of its raging
Is as an angry tide!
Thy happy lot I'll share;
On, through the sunny air! Whate'er the food thou eatest,
Bird, I will eat it too, And ere it reach the stormy earth,
Will drink with thee the dew' My father and my mother,
I'll leave them for thy sake; And where thy nest is builded,
My pleasant home will make! Is it woven of the sunshine,
And the fragrance of the spice; And cradled round with happiness?
Sweet Bird of Paradise ! O take me, take me to it,
Wherever it may be, For far into the sunshine
I'll fly away with thee!
A many years ago;
A truer tale we know.
Within the forest green
Its very eggs hath seen.
They take no charm from thee; Thou art a creature of the earth,
And not a mystery!
The Nettle he throve, and the Nettle he
grew, And the strength of the earth around him he drew: There was a pale Stellaria meek, But as he grew strong, so she grew weak; There was a Campion, crimson-eyed, But as he grew up, the Campion died ; And the blue Veronica, shut from light, Faded away in a sickly white; For upon his leaves a dew there hung, That fell like a blight from a serpent's tongue, And there was not a flower about the spot, Herb-Robert, Harebell, nor Forget-me-not. Yet up grew the Nettle like water-sedge, Higher and higher above the hedge; The stuff of his leaves was strong and stout, And the points of his stinging-flowers stood out; And the Child that went in the wood to play, From the great King-nettle would shrink away! “ Now," says the King-nettle, “ there's none like me; “I am as great as a plant can be! “I have crushed each weak and tender root, “ With the mighty power of my kingly foot; “I have spread out my arms so strong and wide, “ And opened my way on every side; “ I have drawn from the earth its virtues fine, “To strengthen for me each poison-spine; " Both morn and night my leaves I've spread, “And upon the falling dews have fed, “Till I am as great as a forest-tree; “ The great wide world is the place for me !" Said the Nettle-king in his bravery. Just then up came a Woodman stout,
pick of the wood he was peering about.
And when cold winter comes, and the water-plants
die, THE WATER-RAT.
And his little brooks yield him no longer supply,
Down into his burrow he cozily creeps, Come into the meadows, this bright summer day;
And quietly through the long winter-time sleeps, The people are merrily making the hay:
Thus in summer his table by Nature is spread,
THE SPARROW'S NEST.
A Sparrow's nest upon the ground;
Blown out of yonder old elm tree.
And what a medley thing it is !
I never saw a nest like this, And the rich, plumy crests of the Meadow-sweet seem
So neatly wove with decent care, Like foam which the current has left on the stream;
Of silvery moss and shining hair; There I 'll show you the brown Water-Rat at his
But put together, odds and ends, play
Picked up from enemies and friends : You will see nothing blither this blithe summer day;
See, bits of thread, and bits of rag,
Just like a little rubbish-bag!
And here is muslin, pink and green,
And bits of calico between; See how gravely he sits ; how demure and how still,
O never thinks the lady fair, Like an anchorite old at his mossy door-sill!
As she goes by with mincing air, Ah no, now his mood of sedateness is gone,
How the pert Sparrow over-head,
Has robbed her gown to make its bed!
Well, here has hoarding been and hiving,
And not a little good contriving, For this little field-stream hath all good that he needs,
Before a home of peace and ease In the budding tree-roots and the clustering reeds,
Was fashioned out of things like these ! And the snowy-flowered arrow-head thick growing
Think, had these odds and ends been brought here:
To some wise man renowned for thought, Ah, pity it is man has taught him to fear!
Some man, of men a very gem,
Pray what could he have done with them?
Just bits and scraps, so very small,
“ And out of these, you must contrive And he launches away like a brave mariner;
A dwelling large enough for five; See there, up the stream how he merrily rows,
Neat, warm, and snug; with comfort stored ; And the tall fragrant Calamus bows as he goes !
Where five small things may lodge and board." And now he is lost at the foot of the tree; "T is his home, and a snug little home it must be ! How would the man of learning vast
Have been astonished and aghast; And 't is thus that the Water-Rat liveth all day, And vowed that such a thing had been In these small pleasures wearing the summer away;
Ne'er heard of, thought of, much less seen. 14
But when the sun rose redly up
To shine for half a year, Round and round through the skies to sail,
Nor once to disappear,
Ah! man of learning, you are wrong;
Then on I went, with curious eyes
And saw where, like to man, The Beaver built his palaces;
And where the Ermine ran.
And came where sailed the lonely Swans
Wild on their native flood; And the shy Elk grazed up the mossy hills,
And the Wolf was in the wood.
And the frosty plains like diamonds shone,
And the iced rocks also,
Till the soft south wind did blow.
And then upsprang the grass and flowers,
Sudden, and sweet, and bright; And the wild birds filled the solitude
With a fervour of delight.
But nothing was there that pleased me more
Than when, in autumn brown, I came in the depths of the pathless woods,
To the Grey Squirrel's town.
For the handsome Kingfisher, go not to the tree,
ing, Where the tall, heavy Typha and Loosestrife are
growing ; By the bright little streams that all joyfully run A while in the shadow, and then in the sun. He lives in a hole that is quite to his mind, With the green, mossy Hazel roots firinly entwined; Where the dark Alder-bough waves gracefully o'er, And the Sword-flag and Arrow-head grow at his door. There busily, busily, all the day long, He seeks for small fishes the shallows among; For he builds his nest of the pearly fish-bone, Deep, deep in the bank far retired, and alone. Then the brown Water-Rat from his burrow looks
out, To see what his neighbour Kingfisher 's about; And the green Dragon-fly, Nitting slowly away, Just pauses one moment to bid him good-day. O happy Kingfisher! what care should he know, By the clear, pleasant streams, as he skims to and fro, Now lost in the shadow, now bright in the sheen of the hot summer sun, glancing scarlet and green!
There were hundreds that in the hollow boles
Of the old, old trees did dwell,
of the sweet mast as it fell.
But soon the hungry wild Swine came,
And with thievish snout dug up Their buried treasure, and left them not
So much as an acorn-cup!
And one and all decree,
Over hill and dale to flee.
Over hill and dale, over hill and dale,
For many a league they went; Like a troop of undaunted travellers
Governed by one consent. But the Hawk and Eagle, and peering Owl,
Did dreadfully pursue ; And the farther the Grey Squirrels went,
The more their perils grew. When lo! to cut off their pilgrimage,
A broad stream lay in view.
THE MIGRATION OF THE GREY
SQUIRRELS. When in my youth I travelled
Throughout each north countrie,
And many a strange thing see.
Built of the drifted snow;
Nor other light did know.
For months in the winter dark;
And the blue Fox's bark.
But then did each wondrous creature show
His cunning and bravery ; With a piece of the Pine-bark in his mouth,
Unto the stream came he,
And boldly his little bark he launched,
Without the least delay;
Never was there a lovelier sight
Than that Grey Squirrels' fleet;
What fortune it would meet.
And ever and anon,
And its little steersman gone.
I saw them leap to shore;
Your wondrous works were formed as true;
THE TRUE STORY OF WEB-SPINNER.
Up in the north if thou sail with me,
WEB-SPINNER was a miser old,
Who came of low degree ;
And he kept bad company ;
of a black felon grim ; To all the country he was known,
But none spoke well of him. His house was seven stories high,
In a corner of the street, And it always had a dirty look,
When other homes were neat; Up in his garret dark he lived,
And from the windows high
Upon the passers by.
Yet many have averred,
Were often loudly heard ;
Although a few went in,
And stripped him to the skin;
Yet mercy ne'er was shown The miser cut his body up,
And picked him bone from bone.
The dismal story true ;
I tell it so to you.
One Madgy de la Moth,
Had not gone there, in troth ;
At nightfall in the street,
Dry scraps of broken meat.
With a modest tap, and low,
Like an arrow from a bow.
• A fact.