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Thee Winter in the garland wears
That thinly decks his few grey hairs;
Spring parts the clouds with softest airs,

That she may sun thee;
Whole Summer fields are thine by right ;
And Autumn, melancholy Wight!
Doth in thy crimson head delight

When rains are on thee. In shoals and bands, a morrice train, Thou greet'st the traveller in the lane; Pleased at his greeting thee again ;

Yet nothing daunted, Nor grieved if thou be set at nought : And oft alone in nooks remote We meet thee, like a pleasant thought,

When such are wanted.
Be violets in their secret mews
The flowers the wanton Zephyrs choose;
Proud be the rose, with rains and dews

Her head impearling;
Thou liv'st with less ambitious aim,
Yet hast not gone without thy fame;
Thou art indeed by many a claim

The Poet's darling.
If to a rock from rains he fly,
Or, some bright day of April sky,
Imprisoned by hot sunshine lie

Near the green holly,

And wearily at length should fare,
He needs but look about, and there
Thou art !-a friend at hand, to scare

His melancholy.
A hundred times, by rock or bower,
Ere thus I have lain couched an hour,
Have I derived from thy sweet power

Some apprehension;
Some steady love ; some brief delight;
Some memory that had taken flight;
Some chime of fancy wrong or right;

Or stray invention. :
If stately passions in me burn,
And one chance look to Thee should turn,
I drink out of an humbler urn

A lowlier pleasure ;
The homely sympathy that heeds
The common life our nature breeds;
A wisdom fitted to the needs

Of hearts at leisure.
Fresh-smitten by the morning ray,
When thou art up, alert and gay,
Then, cheerful Flower! my spirits play

With kindred gladness :
And when, at dusk, by dews opprest
Thou sink'st, the image of thy rest
Hath often eased my pensive breast

Of careful sadness.

And all day long I number yet,
All seasons through, another debt,
Which I, wherever thou art met,

To thee am owing;
An instinct call it, a blind sense ;
A happy, genial influence,
Coming one knows not how, nor whence,

Nor whither going.
Child of the Year! that round dost run
Thy pleasant course, -when day's begun
As ready to salute the sun

As lark or leveret,
Thy long-lost praise* thou shalt regain;
Nor be less dear to future men
Than in old time ;-thou not in vain
Art Nature's favourite.

1802

* See, in Chaucer and the elder Poets, the honours formerly paid to this flower.

A WREN'S NEST.

Among the dwellings framed by birds

Tiz field or forest with nice care, Is none that with the little Wren's

In snugness may compare.

No door the tenement requires,

And seldom needs a laboured roof, Yet is it to the fiercest sun

Impervious, and storm-proof.

So warm, so beautiful withal,

In perfect fitness for its aim, That to the Kind by special grace

Their instinct surely came.

And when for their abodes they seek,

An opportune recess,
The Hirmit has no finer eye

Fai cuadowy quietness.

These find, 'mid ivied abbey walls,

A canopy in some still nook ; Others are pent-housed by a brae

That overhangs a brook.

There to the brooding bird her mate

Warbles by fits his low clear song; And by the busy streamlet both

Are sung to all day long.

Or in sequestered lanes they build,

Where, till the flitting bird's return, Her eggs within the nest repose,

Like relics in an urn.

But still, where general choice is good,

There is a better and a best; And, among fairest objects, some

Are fairer than the rest;

This, one of those small builders proved

In a green covert, where, from out The forehead of a pollard oak,

The leafy antlers sprout ;

For She who planned the mossy lodge

Mistrusting her evasive skill, Had to a Primrose looked for aid

Her wishes to fulfil.

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