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Of large extent, hard by a castle huge,
But never elsewhere in one place I knew
They answer and provoke each other's song,
And one low, piping sound more sweet than all—
That, should you close your eyes, you might almost
You may, perchance, behold them on the twigs,
A most gentle maid,
Who dwelleth in her hospitable home
(Even like a lady vowed and dedicate
To something more than Nature in the grove)
Many a nightingale perched giddily
On blossomy twig still swinging from the breeze,
Like tipsy joy that reels with tossing head.
SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE.
Find one sad level-and how, soon or late,
Wronged and wrong-doer, each with meeken'd face,
Pass the green threshold of our common grave,
Our common sorrow, like a mighty wave,
Swept all my pride away, and trembling I forgave!
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
The rain is falling where they lie, but the cold November
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 hill the golden-rod, and the aster in the wood,
THE DEATH OF THE FLOWERS.
And the yellow sun-flower by the brook in autumn beauty
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
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
And then I think of one who in her youthful beauty died, The fair, meek blossom that grew up and faded by my side :
In the cold, moist earth we laid her, when the forest cast the leaf,
And we wept that one so lovely should have a life so
Yet not unmeet it was that one, like that young friend of
So gentle and so beautiful, should perish with the flowers.
WILLIAM CULLEN BRYANT.