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Every spring awakes new hope,
Some sought their food among the finny shoals,
Swift darting from the clouds, emerging soon
Their eyries inaccessible, and trained Snow-bunting, in winter cry:
Their hardy broods to forage in all weathers : • Misery, and cold, and dearth!
Others, more gorgeously appareled, dwelt
Among the woods, on nature's dainties feeding,
Herbs, seeds, and roots; or, ever on the wing,
Pursuing insects through the boundless air :
In hollow trees or thickets these concealed
Their exquisitely woven nests; where lay
On their own breasts, till from her search the dam
With laden bill returned, and shared the meal
Among her clamorous suppliants, all agape ;
Then, cowering o'er them with expanded wings,
She felt how sweet it is to be a mother.
Of these, a few, with melody untaught,
Turned all the air to music within hearing,
And made the forest echo to their screams
Discordant, — yet there was no discord there,
But tempered harmony; all tones combining, But most of all it wins my admiration
In the rich confluence of ten thousand tongues, To view the structure of this little work,
To tell of joy and to inspire it. Who A bird's nest, mark it well within, without :
Could hear such concert, and not join in chorus ?
PLEA FOR THE BIRDS.
Plato, anticipating the reviewers,
From his republic banished without pity
The poets : in this little town of yours,
You put to death, by means of a committee,
The street-musicians of the heavenly city,
The birils, who make sweet music for us all
In our dark hours, as David did for Saul.
From the green steeples of the piny wood ;
Flooding with melody the neighborhood ;
Of a scant handful more or less of wheat,
FROM "THE BIRDS OF KILLINGWORTH."
A JUNE SONG.
As are the songs these uninvited guests
BIRDS BY MY WINDOW. Sing at their feast with comfortable breasts.
Sweet birds that by my window sing, Do you ne'er think what wondrous beings these ?
Or sail around on careless wing, Do you ne'er think who made them, and who
Beseech ye, lend your caroling,
While I salute my darling.
She's far from me, away, away,
Across the hills, beyond the bay, Sweeter than instrument of man e'er caught !
But still my heart goes night and day Whose habitations in the tree-tops even
To meet and greet my darling. Are half-way houses on the road to heaven !
from out whose swelling throat Think, every morning when the sun peeps through Uustinted joys of music float,
The dim, leaf-latticed windows of the grove, Come lend to me thine own June note,
To warble to my darling.
Sweet dove, thy tender, lovelorn coo
And I shall win my darling.
Lark, ever leal to dawn of day, Of empty nests that cling to boughs and beams,
Pause ere thou wingst thy skyward way, As in an idiot's brain remembered words
Pause, and bestow one quivering lay,
One anthem for my darling.
Ah, mocker! rich as leafy June,
Thou 'lt grant, I know, one little boon, Dray home the stingy harvest, and no more
One strain of thy most matchless tune, The feathered gleaners follow to your door?
To solace my own darling. What! would you rather see the incessant stir
Bright choir, your peerless song shall stir Of insects in the windrows of the hay,
The rapturons chords of love in her ; And hear the locust and the grasshopper
But who shall be our messenger, Their melancholy hurly-gurlies play?
When we salute my darling? Is this more pleasant to you than the whirr
Of meadow-lark, and its sweet roundelay, O voiceless swallow, crown of spring, Or twitter of little fielıllares, as you take
Lend us awhile thy swist curved wing : Your nooning in the shade of bush and brake ? Straight as an arrow thou shalt bring
This greeting to my darling ! You call them thieves and pillagers ; but know
They are the wingeil warılens of your farms,
When the snows had melted, and the FifthAnd crying havoc on the slug and snail.
month grass was growing,
l'p this sea-shore, in some briers, How can I teach your children gentleness,
Two guests from Alabama, two together, And mercy to the weak, and reverence
And their nest, and four light-green eggs, spotted For Life, which, in its weakness or excess,
with brown, Is still a gleam of Gol's omnipotence,
And every day the he-bird, to and fro, near at hand, Or Death, which, seeming darkness, is no less And every day the she-bird, crouched on her The selfsame light, although avertel hence,
nest, silent, with bright eyes, When by your laws, your actions, and your speechi, And every day I, a curious boy, never too close, You contradict the very things I teach?
never disturbing them, Cautiously peering, absorbing, translating.
FROM " OUT OF THE CRADLE ENDLESSLY ROCKING."
H. W. LOXGFELLOW.
And thenceforward, all summer, in the sound
“O rising stars ! of the sea,
Perhaps the one I want so much will rise, will And at night, under the full of the moon, in
rise with some of you. calmer weather, Over the hoarse surging of the sea,
“O throat ! O trembling throat !
Sound clearer through the atmosphere !
Pierce the woods, the earth ;
Somewhere listening to catch you, must be the
one I want. The solitary guest from Alabama. * Blow ! blow ! blow !
“Shake out, carols ! Blow up, sea-winds, along Paumanok's shore !
Solitary here - the night's carols !
Carols under that lagging, yellow, waning moon !
0, under that moon, where she droops almost Yes, when the stars glistened,
down into the sea ! All night long, on the prong of a moss-scalloped o reckless, despairing carols !
stake, Down, almost amid the slapping waves,
“But soft! sink low ; Sat the lone singer, wonderful, causing tears. Soft ! let me just murmur ;
And do you wait a moment, you husky-noised sea ; He called on his mate;
For somewhere I believe I heard my mate reHe poured forth the meanings which I, of all
sponding to me,
But not altogether still, for then she might not “Soothe ! soothe ! soothe !
come immediately to me. Close on its wave soothes the wave behind, And again another behind, embracing and lap
“Hither, my love! ping, every one close,
Here I am! Here! But my love soothes not me, not me.
With this just-sustained note I announce myself “Low hangs the moon - it rose late.
This gentle call is for you, my love, for you. 0, it is lagging - 0, I think it is heavy with love, with love.
“Do not be decoyed elsewhere !
That is the whistle of the wind - it is not my “0, madly the sea pushes, pushes upon the land,
voice; With love with love.
That is the fluttering, the fluttering of the spray ;
Those are the shadows of leaves. “O night ! do I not see my love fluttering out there among the breakers ?
“O darkness! O in vain ! What is that little black thing I see there in the o, I am very sick and sorrowful."
to you ;
TO THE CUCKOO.
When the tongue swingsout to the midnight moon,
When the sexton cheerly rings for noon,
When the clock strikes clear at morning light,
When the child is waked with “nine at night," Now Heaven repairs thy rural seat,
When the chimes play soft in the Sabbath air,
Filling the spirit with tones of prayer,
Whatever tale in the bell is hearid,
He broods on his folded feet unstirreil,
Or, rising half in his rounded nest,
He takes the time to smooth his breast,
Then drops again, with filmed eyes,
And sleeps as the last vibration dies.
Sweet bird ! I would that I could be
A hermit in the crowd like thee!
With wings to fly to wood and glen,
Thy lot, like mine, is cast with men ;
I tread, like thee, the crowded street,
Thou canst dismiss the world, and soar ;
Or, at a half-felt wish for rest,
And drop, forgetful, to thy nest.
I would that in such wings of gold
I could my weary heart upfold ;
I would I could look down inmoved
(Unloving as I am unloved),
And while the world throngs on beneath,
Smooth down my cares and calmly breathe ;
And never sail with others' sadness,
And never glad with others' gladness,
Listen, unstirred, to knell or chime,
And, lapped in quiet, bide my time.
NATHANIEL PARKER WILLIS
THE BELFRY PIGEON.
On the cross-beam under the Old South bell
Whatever is rung on that noisy bell,
Bird of the wilderness,
Blithesome and cumberless,
Emblem of happiness,
Blest is thy dwelling-place, -
Wild is thy lay and loud
Far in the downy cloud,
Where, on thy dewy wing,
Where art thou journeying ?
O'er fell and fountain sheen,
O'er moor and mountain green,
Over the cloudlet dim,
Over the rainbow's rim,
Then, when the gloaming comes,