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С.Р. Станево

THE BOBOLINKS.

When Nature had made all her birds,
And had no cares to think on,
She gave a rippling laugh-and out

. There flew a Bobolinkon.

She laughed again,—out flew a mate.

A breeze of Eden bore them

Across the fields of Paradise,

The sunshine reddening o'er them.

Incarnate sport and holiday,

They flew and sang forever;

Their souls through June were all in tune, Their wings were weary never.

The blithest song of breezy farms,
Quaintest of field-note flavors,
Exhaustless fount of trembling trills
And demisemiquavers.

Their tribe, still drunk with air and light

And perfume of the meadow,

Go reeling up and down the sky,

In sunshine and in shadow.

One springs from out the dew-wet grass,
Another follows after;

The morn is thrilling with their songs

And peals of fairy laughter.

From out the marshes and the brook
They set the tall reeds swinging,
And meet and frolic in the air,

Half prattling and half singing.

When morning winds sweep meadow lands
In green and russet billows,
And toss the lonely elm-tree's boughs,
And silver all the willows,

I see you buffeting the breeze,
Or with its motion swaying,

Your notes half-drowned against the wind

Or down the current playing.

When far away o'er grassy flats,

Where the thick wood commences,

The white-sleeved mowers look like specks

Beyond the zigzag fences,

And noon is hot, and barn-roofs gleam

White in the pale-blue distance,

I hear the saucy minstrels still
In chattering persistence.

When Eve her domes of opal fire
Piles round the blue horizon;
Or thunder rolls from hill to hill

A Kyrie Eleison,—

Still, merriest of the merry birds,
Your sparkle is unfading, —
Pied harlequins of June, no end
Of song and masquerading.

What cadences of bubbling mirth
Too quick for bar or rhythm!
What ecstacies, too full to keep
Coherent measure with them!

O could I share, without champagne
Or muscadel, your frolic,
The glad delirium of your joy,

Your fun un-apostolic,

Your drunken jargon through the fields,

Your bobolinkish gabble,

Your fine anacreontic glee,

Your tipsy reveler's babble!

Nay, let me not profane such joy

With similes of folly,

No wine of earth could waken songs

So delicately jolly!

O boundless self-contentment, voiced

In flying air-born bubbles!

O joy that mocks our sad unrest,

And drowns our earth-born troubles!

Hope springs with you: I dread no more Despondency and dullness;

For Good Supreme can never fail

That gives such perfect fullness.

The Life that floods the happy fields
With song and light and color,
Will shape our lives to richer states,
And heap our measures fuller.

THE BIRD AND THE BELL.

ITALY.

The nations that in darkness sat have seen
The light. The blind receive their sight again.
The querulous old man who stands between
His children and their hopes, with threats insane,
Trembles, as though an earthquake split in twain
The crumbling rock beneath Saint Peter's dome;
And the last hiding-place of tyranny-is Rome.

For Italy, long pining, sad, and crushed, Has hurled her royal despots from the land. Back to her wasted heart the blood has gushed, Her wan cheek blooms, and her once nerveless hand Guides with firm touch the purpose she has planned. Thank God! thank generous France! the battle-smoke Lifts from her bloody fields. See, at her feet her yoke!

Not like a maddened anarch does she rise:
The torch she holds is no destroying flame,
But a clear beacon,-like her own clear eyes
Straining across the war-clouds; and the shame
Of wild misrule has never stained her name.
Calm and determined, politic yet bold,
She comes to take her place,—the Italy of old.

She asks no boon, except to stand enrolled
Among the nations. Give her space and air,
Our Sister! She has pined in dungeons cold.
A little sunshine for our Sister fair,

A little hope to cover past despair,

God's blessing on the long-lost, the unbound!

The earth has waited long; the heavens now answer"Found!"

The nations greet her as some lovely guest
Arriving late, where friends pour out the wine.
Ay, press around, and pledge her in the best
Your table yields, and in her praise combine!
And ye who love her most, press near, and twine
Her locks with wreaths, and in her large dark eyes
See all her sorrowing past, and her great future rise!

LUNA THROUGH A LORGNETTE.

I to-night was at a party

Given by the fair Astarte.

Star-like eyes danced twinkling round me;

Cold they left me, as they found me,

One bright vision, one face only,

Made me happy and yet lonely.

It was hers to whom is given

Rule by night, the queen of heaven. "Ah, how fair she is!" I muttered,

Like a night-moth as I fluttered

Round her light, but dared not enter
That intensely radiant center,

Whence she filled the clouds about her,
Whence she lit the very outer
Darkness, and the ocean hoary
With her floods of golden glory.

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