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With what a glory comes and goes the year !
The buds of spring, those beautiful harbingers
There is a beautiful spirit breathing now Its mellow richness on the clustered trees, And, from a beaker full of richest dyes, Pouring new glory on the autumn woods, And dipping in warm light the pillared clouds. Morn on the mountain, like a summer bird, Lifts up her purple wing, and in the vales The gentle wind, a sweet and passionate wooer, Kisses the blushing leaf, and stirs up life Within the solemn woods of ash deep-crimsoned, And silver beech, and maple yellow-leaved, Where Autumn, like a faint old man, sits down By the wayside a-weary. Through the trees The golden robin moves; the purple finch, That on wild cherry and red cedar feeds, A winter bird, comes with its plaintive whistle, And pecks by the witch-hazel, whilst aloud From cottage roofs the warbling blue-bird sings; And merrily, with oft-repeated stroke, Sounds from the threshing-floor the busy flail.
O what a glory doth this world put on For him who, with a fervent heart, goes forth Under the bright and glorious sky, and looks On duties well performed, and days well spent ! For him the wind, ay, and the yellow leaves Shall have a voice, and give him eloquent teachings. He shall so hear the solemn hymn, that Death Has lifted up for all, that he shall go To his long resting-place without a tear.
WOODS IN WINTER.
WHEN winter winds are piercing chill,
And through the white-thorn blows the gale, With solemn feet I tread the hill,
That overbrows the lonely vale.
O’er the bare upland, and away
Through the long reach of desert woods, The embracing sunbeams chastely play,
And gladden these deep solitudes.
Where, twisted round the barren oak,
The summer vine in beauty clung, And summer winds the stillness broke,
The crystal icicle is hung.
Where, from their frozen urns, mute springs
Pour out the river's gradual tide, Shrilly the skater’s iron rings,
And voices fill the woodland side.
Alas ! how changed from the fair scene,
When birds sang out their mellow lay, And winds were soft, and woods were green,
And the song ceased not with the day.
But still wild music is abroad,
Pale, desert woods! within your crowd; And gathered winds, in hoarse accord,
Amid the vocal reeds pipe loud.