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Dirge for the Year
As an earthquake rocks a corse
In its coffin in the clay,
Rocks the dead-cold year to-day;
As the wild air stirs and sways
The tree-swung cradle of a child,
Rocks the year:-be calm and mild,
January gray is here,
Like a sexton by her grave; February bears the bier;
March with grief doth howl and rave, And April weeps—but, O, ye hours, Follow with May's fairest flowers.
Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792–1822]
WOOD AND FIELD AND RUNNING
I do not count the hours I spend
In wandering by the sea;
Like God it useth me.
In plains that room for shadows make
Of skirting hills to lie,
Their colors from the sky;
Or on the mountain-crest sublime,
Or down the oaken glade,
For this the day was made.
Cities of mortals woe-begone
Fantastic care derides,
Stern benefit abides.
Sheen will tarnish, honey cloy,
And merry is only a mask of sad,
The woods at heart are glad.
There the great Planter plants
Of fruitful worlds the grain,
“ When in the Woods I Wander” 1355
Still on the seeds of all he made
The rose of beauty burns;
Immortal youth returns.
The black ducks mounting from the lake,
The pigeon in the pines,
Down in yon watery nook,
Where bearded mists divide,
The sires of Nature, hide.
Aloft, in secret veins of air,
Blows the sweet breath of song,
Though they to all belong!
See thou bring not to field or stone
The fancies found in books;
To brave the landscape's looks.
Oblivion here thy wisdom is,
Thy thrift, the sleep of cares; For a proud idleness like this Crowns all thy mean affairs.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882]
“WHEN IN THE WOODS I WANDER ALL
When in the woods I wander all alone,
Whilst here I wander, pleased to be alone,
Edward Hovell-Thurlow (1781-1829]
ASPECTS OF THE PINES
They rise, scarce touched by melancholy airs,
As if from realms of mystical despairs. Tall, somber, grim, they stand with dusky gleams
Brightening to gold within the woodland's core, Beneath the gracious noontide's tranquil beams,
But the weird winds of morning sigh no more. A stillness, strange, divine, ineffable,
Broods round and o’er them in the wind's surcease, And on each tinted copse and shimmering dell
Rests the mute rapture of deep hearted peace. Last, sunset comes—the solemn joy and might
Borne from the West when cloudless day declines— Low, flute-like breezes sweep the waves of light,
And, lifting dark green tresses of the pines, Till every lock is luminous, gently float,
Fraught with hale odors up the heavens afar, To faint when twilight on her virginal throat Wears for a gem the tremulous vesper star.
Paul Hamilton Hayne (1830-1886]
“ THE WOODS THAT BRING THE SUNSET
"On Wenlock Edge”
When o'er wide seas the sun declines,
This house that looks to east, to west,
Richard Watson Gilder (1844-1909)
UNDER THE LEAVES
Without the blessed foreknowing
The fairest buds were growing.
To-day the south-wind sweeps away
The types of autumn's splendor, And shows the sweet arbutus flowers,
Spring's children, pure and tender.
O prophet-flowers!—with lips of bloom,
Outvying in your beauty
Ye teach me faith and duty!
Walk life's dark ways, ye seem to say,
With love's divine foreknowing
Albert Laighton (1829–1887]
“ON WENLOCK EDGE”