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Title: Graded Poetry: Third Year
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Graded Poetry: Third Year" ***

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GRADED POETRY

THIRD YEAR

EDITED BY

KATHERINE D. BLAKE

PRINCIPAL GIRLS' DEPARTMENT PUBLIC SCHOOL NO. 6, NEW YORK CITY

AND

GEORGIA ALEXANDER

SUPERVISING PRINCIPAL, INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA

[Illustration]

          NEW YORK
          MAYNARD, MERRILL, & CO.
          1906



          COPYRIGHT, 1905,
          BY
          MAYNARD, MERRILL, & CO.



INTRODUCTION


POETRY is the chosen language of childhood and youth. The baby repeats
words again and again for the mere joy of their sound: the melody of
nursery rhymes gives a delight which is quite independent of the meaning
of the words. Not until youth approaches maturity is there an equal
pleasure in the rounded periods of elegant prose. It is in childhood
therefore that the young mind should be stored with poems whose rhythm
will be a present delight and whose beautiful thoughts will not lose
their charm in later years.

The selections for the lowest grades are addressed primarily to the
feeling for verbal beauty, the recognition of which in the mind of the
child is fundamental to the plan of this work. The editors have felt
that the inclusion of critical notes in these little books intended for
elementary school children would be not only superfluous, but, in the
degree in which critical comment drew the child's attention from the
text, subversive of the desired result. Nor are there any notes on
methods. The best way to teach children to love a poem is to read it
inspiringly to them. The French say: "The ear is the pathway to the
heart." A poem should be so read that it will sing itself in the hearts
of the listening children.

In the brief biographies appended to the later books the human element
has been brought out. An effort has been made to call attention to the
education of the poet and his equipment for his life work rather than to
the literary qualities of his style.



CONTENTS

FIRST HALF YEAR

                                                                    PAGE
  The Owl and the Pussy-cat.         _Edward Lear_                     7
  Wishing                            _William Allingham_               9
  The Piper                          _William Blake_                  10
  A Year's Windfalls                 _Christina G. Rossetti_          11
  The Voice of Spring                _Mary Howitt_                    16
  The Spring Walk                    _Thomas Miller_                  18
  "Over Hill, Over Dale"             _William Shakespeare_            21
  The Throstle                       _Alfred Tennyson_                22
  The Violet                         _Jane Taylor_                    23
  Bobolink                           _Clinton Scollard_               24
  The Four Winds                     _Frank Dempster Sherman_         26
  The Violet                         _Lucy Larcom_                    27
  Pebbles                            _Frank Dempster Sherman_         28
  The Tree                           _Björnstjerne Björnson_          29
  September                          _Frank Dempster Sherman_         30
  The Swallow                        _Christina G. Rossetti_          32
  Thanksgiving Day                   _Lydia Maria Child_              32
  Hiawatha's Childhood               _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow_     34
  Hiawatha's Sailing                 _Henry Wadsworth Longfellow_     39
  Child's Evening Prayer             _Sabine Baring-Gould_            44


SECOND HALF YEAR

  Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean                                      45
  Corinna going a-Maying             _Robert Herrick_                 47
  Sweet Peas                         _John Keats_                     49
  The Bluebird                       _Emily Huntington Miller_        50
  Where go the Boats?                _Robert Louis Stevenson_         51
  The Magpie's Nest                  _Charles Lamb, Mary Lamb_        52
  The Sandman                        _Margaret Vandegrift_            56
  The Fairies of the Caldon-Low      _Mary Howitt_                    58
  Night-scented Flowers              _Felicia Dorothea Hemans_        63
  Indian Summer                      _John Greenleaf Whittier_        64
  November                           _Alice Cary_                     65
  The Frost Spirit                   _John Greenleaf Whittier_        67
  The Owl                            _Alfred Tennyson_                69
  The Wind and the Moon              _George Macdonald_               70
  The Tempest                        _James T. Fields_                74
  A Visit from St. Nicholas          _Clement C. Moore_               76
  Lucy Gray                          _William Wordsworth_             81
  The Wonderful World                _William Brighty Rands_          84
  To a Child. Written in her Album   _William Wordsworth_             85
  Consider                           _Christina G. Rossetti_          86
  Lullaby of an Infant Chief         _Sir Walter Scott_               87
  Dutch Lullaby                      _Eugene Field_                   88
  The Night Wind                     _Eugene Field_                   91
  Marjorie's Almanac                 _Thomas Bailey Aldrich_          93
  A Child's Prayer                   _Betham Edwards_                 96

       *       *       *       *       *

The poems by Longfellow, Whittier, Alice Cary, J. T. Fields, and Frank
Dempster Sherman are published by special arrangement with the
publishers, Messrs. Houghton, Mifflin, & Company.



THIRD YEAR--FIRST HALF



EDWARD LEAR

ENGLAND, 1812-1888


The Owl and the Pussy-Cat

          The Owl and the Pussy-Cat went to sea
            In a beautiful pea-green boat.
          They took some honey, and plenty of money
            Wrapped up in a five-pound note.
          The Owl looked up to the moon above,                         5
            And sang to a small guitar,
          "O lovely Pussy! O Pussy, my love!
            What a beautiful Pussy you are,--
                          You are;
            What a beautiful Pussy you are!"                          10

          Pussy said to the Owl, "You elegant fowl!
            How wonderful sweet you sing!
          Oh let us be married,--too long we have tarried,--
            But what shall we do for a ring?"
          They sailed away for a year and a day
            To the land where the Bong-tree grows,
          And there in a wood, a piggy-wig stood                       5
            With a ring in the end of his nose,--
                          His nose;
            With a ring in the end of his nose.

          "Dear Pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling
            Your ring?" Said the piggy, "I will."                     10
          So they took it away, and were married next day
            By the turkey who lives on the hill.
          They dined upon mince and slices of quince,
            Which they ate with a runcible spoon,
          And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand,                  15
            They danced by the light of the moon,--
                          The moon;
            They danced by the light of the moon.



WILLIAM ALLINGHAM

IRELAND, 1828-1889


Wishing

          Ring ting! I wish I were a Primrose,
          A bright yellow Primrose, blowing in the spring!
            The stooping bough above me,
            The wandering bee to love me,
          The fern and moss to creep across,                           5
            And the Elm-tree for our king!

          Nay,--stay! I wish I were an Elm-tree,
          A great lofty Elm-tree, with green leaves gay!
            The winds would set them dancing,
            The sun and moonshine glance in,                          10
          And birds would house among the boughs,
            And sweetly sing.

          Oh--no! I wish I were a Robin,--
          A Robin, or a little Wren, everywhere to go,
            Through forest, field, or garden,                         15
            And ask no leave or pardon,
          Till winter comes with icy thumbs
            To ruffle up our wing!

          Well,--tell! where should I fly to,
          Where go sleep in the dark wood or dell?
            Before the day was over,                                   5
            Home must come the rover,
          For mother's kiss,--sweeter this
            Than any other thing.



WILLIAM BLAKE

ENGLAND, 1757-1827


The Piper

          Piping down the valleys wild,
          Piping songs of pleasant glee,                              10
          On a cloud I saw a child,
          And he, laughing, said to me:

          "Pipe a song about a lamb."
          So I piped with merry cheer,
          "Piper, pipe that song again."                              15
          So I piped; he wept to hear.

          "Drop thy pipe, thy happy pipe,
          Sing thy songs of happy cheer."
          So I sung the same again,
          While he wept with joy to hear.

          "Piper, sit thee down and write                              5
          In a book that all may read."
          So he vanish'd from my sight;
          And I pluck'd a hollow reed,

          And I made a rural pen,
          And I stain'd the water clear,                              10
          And I wrote my happy songs
          Every child may joy to hear.



CHRISTINA G. ROSSETTI

ENGLAND, 1830-1894


A Year's Windfalls

          On the wind of January
            Down flits the snow,
          Traveling from the frozen North                             15
            As cold as it can blow.
          Poor robin redbreast,
            Look where he comes;
          Let him in to feel your fire,
            And toss him of your crumbs.

          On the wind in February                                      5
            Snowflakes float still,
          Half inclined to turn to rain,
            Nipping, dripping, chill.
          Then the thaws swell the streams,
            And swollen rivers swell the sea:--                       10
          If the winter ever ends
            How pleasant it will be.

          In the wind of windy March
            The catkins drop down,
          Curly, caterpillar-like,                                    15
            Curious green and brown.
          With concourse of nest-building birds
            And leaf-buds by the way,
          We begin to think of flower
            And life and nuts some day.                               20

          With the gusts of April
            Rich fruit-tree blossoms fall,
          On the hedged-in orchard-green,
            From the southern wall.
          Apple trees and pear trees
            Shed petals white or pink,
          Plum trees and peach trees;                                  5
            While sharp showers sink and sink.

          Little brings the May breeze
            Beside pure scent of flowers,
          While all things wax and nothing wanes
            In lengthening daylight hours.                            10
          Across the hyacinth beds
            The wind lags warm and sweet,
          Across the hawthorn tops,
            Across the blades of wheat.

          In the wind of sunny June                                   15
            Thrives the red rose crop,
          Every day fresh blossoms blow
            While the first leaves drop;
          White rose and yellow rose
            And moss rose choice to find,                             20
          And the cottage cabbage rose
            Not one whit behind.

          On the blast of scorched July
            Drives the pelting hail,
          From thunderous lightning-clouds, that blot
            Blue heaven grown lurid-pale.
          Weedy waves are tossed ashore,                               5
            Sea-things strange to sight
          Gasp upon the barren shore
            And fade away in light.

          In the parching August wind
            Cornfields bow the head,                                  10
          Sheltered in round valley depths,
            On low hills outspread.
          Early leaves drop loitering down
            Weightless on the breeze,
          First fruits of the year's decay                            15
            From the withering trees.

          In brisk wind of September
            The heavy-headed fruits
          Shake upon their bending boughs
            And drop from the shoots;                                 20
          Some glow golden in the sun,
            Some show green and streaked,
          Some set forth a purple bloom,
            Some blush rosy-cheeked.

          In strong blast of October                                   5
            At the equinox,
          Stirred up in his hollow bed
            Broad ocean rocks;
          Plunge the ships on his bosom,
            Leaps and plunges the foam,                               10
          It's oh! for mothers' sons at sea,
            That they were safe at home.

          In slack wind of November
            The fog forms and shifts;
          All the world comes out again                               15
            When the fog lifts.
          Loosened from their sapless twigs
            Leaves drop with every gust;
          Drifting, rustling, out of sight
            In the damp or dust.                                      20

          Last of all, December,
            The year's sands nearly run,
          Speeds on the shortest day
            Curtails the sun;
          With its bleak raw wind
            Lays the last leaves low,
          Brings back the nightly frosts,                              5
            Brings back the snow.



MARY HOWITT

ENGLAND, 1804-1888


The Voice of Spring

          I am coming, I am coming!
          Hark! the little bee is humming;
          See, the lark is soaring high
          In the blue and sunny sky;                                  10
          And the gnats are on the wing,
          Wheeling round in airy ring.

          See, the yellow catkins cover
          All the slender willows over!
          And on the banks of mossy green                             15
          Starlike primroses are seen;
          And, their clustering leaves below,
          White and purple violets blow.

          Hark! the new-born lambs are bleating,
          And the cawing rooks are meeting
          In the elms,--a noisy crowd;                                 5
          All the birds are singing loud;
          And the first white butterfly
          In the sunshine dances by.

          Look around thee, look around!
          Flowers in all the fields abound;                           10
          Every running stream is bright;
          All the orchard trees are white;
          And each small and waving shoot
          Promises sweet flowers and fruit.

          Turn thine eyes to earth and heaven:                        15
          God for thee the spring has given,
          Taught the birds their melodies,
          Clothed the earth, and cleared the skies,
          For thy pleasure or thy food:
          Pour thy soul in gratitude.



THOMAS MILLER

ENGLAND, 1807-1874


The Spring Walk

          We had a pleasant walk to-day
          Over the meadows and far away,
          Across the bridge by the water-mill,
          By the woodside and up the hill;
          And if you listen to what I say,                             5
          I'll tell you what we saw to-day.

          Amid a hedge, where the first leaves
          Were peeping from their sheathes so sly,
          We saw four eggs within a nest,
          And they were blue as a summer sky.                         10

          An elder branch dipped in the brook;
          We wondered why it moved, and found
          A silken-haired smooth water-rat
          Nibbling, and swimming round and round.

          Where daisies open'd to the sun,                            15
          In a broad meadow, green and white,
          The lambs were racing eagerly--
          We never saw a prettier sight.

          We saw upon the shady banks
          Long rows of golden flowers shine,
          And first mistook for buttercups                             5
          The star-shaped yellow celandine.

          Anemones and primroses,
          And the blue violets of spring,
          We found, while listening by a hedge
          To hear a merry plowman sing.                               10

          And from the earth the plow turned up
          There came a sweet, refreshing smell,
          Such as the lily of the vale
          Sends forth from many a woodland dell.

          And leaning from the old stone bridge,                      15
          Below, we saw our shadows lie;
          And through the gloomy arches watched
          The swift and fearless swallows fly.

          We heard the speckle-breasted lark
          As it sang somewhere out of sight,                          20
          And tried to find it, but the sky
          Was filled with clouds of dazzling light.

          We saw young rabbits near the woods
          And heard the pheasant's wings go "whir";
          And then we saw a squirrel leap                              5
          From an old oak tree to a fir.

          We came back by the village fields,
          A pleasant walk it was across 'em,
          For all behind the houses lay
          The orchards red and white with blossom.                    10

          Were I to tell you all we saw,
          I'm sure that it would take me hours;
          For the whole landscape was alive
          With bees, and birds, and buds, and flowers.



WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE

ENGLAND, 1564-1616


"Over Hill, Over Dale"

          Over hill, over dale,
          Thorough bush, thorough brier,
          Over park, over pale,
          Thorough flood, thorough fire.
          I do wander everywhere,                                      5
          Swifter than the moone's sphere.
          And I serve the Fairy Queen,
          To dew her orbs upon the green;
          The cowslips tall her pensioners be,
          In their gold coats spots you see,--                        10
          Those be rubies, Fairy favors:
          In those freckles live their savors.
          I must go seek some dew-drops here,
          And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear.



ALFRED TENNYSON

ENGLAND, 1809-1892


The Throstle

          "Summer is coming, summer is coming,
          I know it, I know it, I know it.
          Light again, leaf again, love again."
          Yes, my wild little Poet.

          Sing the new year in under the blue.                         5
          Last year you sang it as gladly.
          "New, new, new, new!" Is it then _so_ new
          That you should carol so madly?

          "Love again, song again, nest again, young again."
          Never a prophet so crazy!                                   10
          And hardly a daisy as yet, little friend,
          See, there is hardly a daisy.

          "Here again, here, here, here, happy year!"
          O warble, unchidden, unbidden!
          Summer is coming, is coming, my dear,                       15
          And all the winters are hidden.



JANE TAYLOR

ENGLAND, 1783-1824


The Violet

          Down in a green and shady bed
            A modest violet grew,
          Its stalk was bent, it hung its head,
            As if to hide from view.

          And yet it was a lovely flower,                              5
            Its colors bright and fair!
          It might have graced a rosy bower
            Instead of hiding there.

          Yet there it was content to bloom
            In modest tints arrayed;                                  10
          And there diffused its sweet perfume
            Within the silent shade.

          Then let me to the valley go,
            This pretty flower to see,
          That I may also learn to grow                               15
            In sweet humility.



CLINTON SCOLLARD[1]

AMERICA, 1860-


Bobolink

          Bobolink--
            He is here!
          _Spink-a-chink!_
            Hark, how clear
          Drops the note                                               5
          From his throat,
          Where he sways
          On the sprays
          Of the wheat
          In the heat!                                                10
            Bobolink,
          _Spink-a-chink!_

          Bobolink
            Is a beau.
          See him prink!                                              15
            Watch him go
          Through the air
          To his fair!
          Hear him sing
          On the wing,--
          Sing his best
          O'er her nest!                                               5
            "Bobolink,
            _Spink-a-chink!_"

          Bobolink,
            Linger long!
          There's a kink                                              10
            In your song
          Like the joy
          Of a boy
          Left to run
          In the sun,--                                               15
          Left to play
          All the day.
            Bobolink,
            _Spink-a-chink!_


FOOTNOTE:

[1] From "A Boy's Book of Rhyme."



FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN

AMERICA, 1860-


The Four Winds

          In winter, when the wind I hear,
          I know the clouds will disappear;
          For 'tis the wind who sweeps the sky
          And piles the snow in ridges high.

          In spring, when stirs the wind, I know                       5
          That soon the crocus buds will show;
          For 'tis the wind who bids them wake
          And into pretty blossoms break.

          In summer, when it softly blows,
          Soon red I know will be the rose;                           10
          For 'tis the wind to her who speaks,
          And brings the blushes to her cheeks.

          In autumn, when the wind is up,
          I know the acorn's out its cup;
          For 'tis the wind who takes it out,
          And plants an oak somewhere about.



LUCY LARCOM

AMERICA, 1826-1893


The Violet

          Dear little violet,                                          5
            Don't be afraid!
          Lift your blue eyes
            From the rock's mossy shade.

          All the birds call for you,
            Out of the sky;                                           10
          May is here waiting,
            And here, too, am I.

          Why do you shiver so,
            Violet, sweet?
          Soft is the meadow grass,                                   15
            Under my feet.

          Wrapped in your hood of green,
            Violet, why
          Peep from your earth door,
            So silent and shy?



FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN

AMERICA, 1860-


Pebbles

          Out of a pellucid brook                                      5
          Pebbles round and smooth I took:
          Like a jewel every one
          Caught a color from the sun,--
          Ruby red and sapphire blue,
          Emerald and onyx too,                                       10
          Diamond and amethyst,--
          Not a precious stone I missed:
          Gems I held from every land
          In the hollow of my hand.
          Workman Water these had made                                15
          Patiently through sun and shade,
          With the ripples of the rill
          He had polished them until,
          Smooth, symmetrical, and bright,
          Each one sparkling in the light
          Showered within its burning heart
          All the lapidary's art;
          And the brook seemed thus to sing:                           5
          Patience conquers everything!



BJÖRNSTJERNE BJÖRNSON

NORWAY, 1832-


The Tree

          The Tree's early leaf buds were bursting their brown;
          "Shall I take them away?" said the Frost, sweeping down.
              "No, leave them alone
              Till the blossoms have grown,"                          10
          Prayed the Tree, while he trembled from rootlet to crown.

          The Tree bore his blossoms, and all the birds sung;
          "Shall I take them away?" said the Wind, as he swung.
              "No, leave them alone
              Till the berries have grown,"
          Said the Tree, while his leaflets quivering hung.

          The Tree bore his fruit in the midsummer glow;               5
          Said the girl: "May I gather thy berries now?"
              "Yes, all thou canst see:
              Take them; all are for thee,"
          Said the Tree, while he bent down his laden boughs low.



FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN

AMERICA, 1860-


September

          Here's a lyric for September,                               10
          Best of all months to remember;
          Month when summer breezes tell
          What has happened, wood and dell,
          Of the joy the year has brought,
          And the changes she has wrought.
          She has turned the verdure red;                              5
          In the blue sky overhead,
          She the harvest moon has hung,
          Like a silver boat among
          Shoals of stars--bright jewels set
          In the earth's blue coronet;                                10
          She has brought the orchard's fruit
          To repay the robin's flute
          Which has gladdened half the year
          With a music liquid, clear;
          And she makes the meadow grass                              15
          Catch the sunbeams as they pass,
          Till the autumn's floor is rolled
          With a fragrant cloth of gold.



CHRISTINA ROSSETTI

ENGLAND, 1830-1894


The Swallow

          Fly away, fly away, over the sea,
          Sun-loving swallow, for summer is done.
          Come again, come again, come back to me,
          Bringing the summer, and bringing the sun.

          When you come hurrying home o'er the sea,                    5
          Then we are certain that winter is past;
          Cloudy and cold though your pathway may be,
          Summer and sunshine will follow you fast.



LYDIA MARIA CHILD

AMERICA, 1802-1880


Thanksgiving Day

          Over the river and through the wood,
            To grandfather's house we go;                             10
            The horse knows the way
            To carry the sleigh
          Through the white and drifted snow.

          Over the river and through the wood--
            Oh, how the wind does blow!                                5
              It stings the toes
              And bites the nose,
            As over the ground we go.

          Over the river and through the wood,
            To have a first-rate play;                                10
              Hear the bells ring,
              "Ting-a-ling-ding!"
            Hurrah for Thanksgiving Day!

          Over the river and through the wood,
            Trot fast, my dapple-gray!                                15
              Spring over the ground,
              Like a hunting hound!
            For this is Thanksgiving Day.

          Over the river and through the wood,
            And straight through the barn-yard gate.                  20
              We seem to go
              Extremely slow--
            It is so hard to wait!

          Over the river and through the wood--
            Now grandmother's cap I spy!                               5
              Hurrah for the fun!
              Is the pudding done?
            Hurrah for the pumpkin pie!



HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW

AMERICA, 1807-1882


Hiawatha's Childhood

          By the shores of Gitche Gumee,
          By the shining Big-Sea-Water,                               10
          Stood the wigwam of Nokomis,
          Daughter of the Moon, Nokomis.
          Dark behind it rose the forest,
          Rose the black and gloomy pine-trees,
          Rose the firs with cones upon them;                         15
          Bright before it beat the water,
          Beat the clear and sunny water,
          Beat the shining Big-Sea-Water.
          There the wrinkled old Nokomis
          Nursed the little Hiawatha,
          Rocked him in his linden cradle,
          Bedded soft in moss and rushes,                              5
          Safely bound with reindeer sinews;
          Stilled his fretful wail by saying,
          "Hush! the Naked Bear will hear thee!"
          Lulled him into slumber, singing,
          "Ewa-yea! my little owlet!                                  10
          Who is this, that lights the wigwam?
          With his great eyes lights the wigwam?
          Ewa-yea! my little owlet!"
          Many things Nokomis taught him
          Of the stars that shine in heaven;                          15
          Showed him Ishkoodah, the comet,
          Ishkoodah, with fiery tresses;
          Showed the Death-Dance of the spirits,
          Warriors with their plumes and war-clubs,
          Flaring far away to northward                               20
          In the frosty nights of Winter;
          Showed the broad white road in heaven,
          Pathway of the ghosts, the shadows,
          Running straight across the heavens,
          Crowded with the ghosts, the shadows.
          At the door on summer evenings,
          Sat the little Hiawatha;
          Heard the whispering of the pine-trees,                      5
          Heard the lapping of the water,
          Sounds of music, words of wonder;
          "Minne-wawa!" said the pine-trees,
          "Mudway-aushka!" said the water.
          Saw the fire-fly, Wah-wah-taysee,                           10
          Flitting through the dusk of evening,
          With the twinkle of its candle
          Lighting up the brakes and bushes.
          And he sang the song of children,
          Sang the song Nokomis taught him:                           15
          "Wah-wah-taysee, little fire-fly,
          Little, flitting, white-fire insect,
          Little, dancing, white-fire creature,
          Light me with your little candle,
          Ere upon my bed I lay me,                                   20
          Ere in sleep I close my eyelids!"
          Saw the moon rise from the water,
          Rippling, rounding from the water,
          Saw the flecks and shadows on it,
          Whispered, "What is that, Nokomis?"
          And the good Nokomis answered:
          "Once a warrior, very angry,
          Seized his grandmother, and threw her                        5
          Up into the sky at midnight;
          Right against the moon he threw her;
          'Tis her body that you see there."
          Saw the rainbow in the heaven,
          In the eastern sky the rainbow,                             10
          Whispered, "What is that, Nokomis?"
          And the good Nokomis answered:
          "'Tis the heaven of flowers you see there:
          All the wild-flowers of the forest,
          All the lilies of the prairie,                              15
          When on earth they fade and perish,
          Blossom in that heaven above us."
          When he heard the owls at midnight,
          Hooting, laughing in the forest,
          "What is that?" he cried in terror;                         20
          "What is that," he said, "Nokomis?"
          And the good Nokomis answered:
          "That is but the owl and owlet,
          Talking in their native language,
          Talking, scolding at each other."
          Then the little Hiawatha
          Learned of every bird its language,
          Learned their names and all their secrets,                   5
          How they built their nests in summer,
          Where they hid themselves in winter,
          Talked with them whene'er he met them,
          Called them "Hiawatha's Chickens."
          Of all beasts he learned the language,                      10
          Learned their names and all their secrets,
          How the beavers built their lodges,
          Where the squirrels hid their acorns,
          How the reindeer ran so swiftly,
          Why the rabbit was so timid,                                15
          Talked with them whene'er he met them,
          Called them "Hiawatha's Brothers."



HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW

AMERICA, 1807-1882


Hiawatha's Sailing

          "Give me of your bark, O Birch Tree!
          Of your yellow bark, O Birch Tree!
          Growing by the rushing river,
          Tall and stately in the valley!
          I a light canoe will build me,                               5
          Build a swift Cheemaun for sailing,
          That shall float upon the river,
          Like a yellow leaf in autumn,
          Like a yellow water lily!
            "Lay aside your cloak, O Birch Tree!                      10
          Lay aside your white skin wrapper,
          For the summer time is coming,
          And the sun is warm in heaven,
          And you need no white skin wrapper!"
            Thus aloud cried Hiawatha                                 15
          In the solitary forest,
          By the rushing Taquamenaw,
          When the birds were singing gaily,
          In the Moon of Leaves were singing,
          And the Sun, from sleep awaking,
          Started up and said, "Behold me!
          Geezis, the great Sun, behold me!"
            And the tree with all its branches
          Rustled in the breeze of morning,                            5
          Saying, with a sigh of patience,
          "Take my cloak, O Hiawatha!"
            With his knife the tree he girdled;
          Just beneath its lowest branches,
          Just above the roots, he cut it,                            10
          Till the sap came oozing outward;
          Down the trunk, from top to bottom,
          Sheer he cleft the bark asunder,
          With a wooden wedge he raised it,
          Stripped it from the trunk unbroken.                        15
            "Give me of your boughs, O Cedar!
          Of your strong and pliant branches,
          My canoe to make more steady,
          Make more strong and firm beneath me!"
            Through the summit of the Cedar                           20
          Went a sound, a cry of horror,
          Went a murmur of resistance;
          But it whispered, bending downward,
          "Take my boughs, O Hiawatha!"
            Down he hewed the boughs of cedar,
          Shaped them straightway to a framework,
          Like two bows he formed and shaped them,
          Like two bended bows together.                               5
            "Give me of your roots, O Tamarack!
          Of your fibrous roots, O Larch Tree!
          My canoe to bind together,
          So to bind the ends together
          That the water may not enter,                               10
          That the river may not wet me!"
            And the Larch with all its fibers,
          Shivered in the air of morning,
          Touched his forehead with its tassels,
          Said, with one long sigh of sorrow,                         15
          "Take them all, O Hiawatha!"
            From the earth he tore the fibers,
          Tore the tough roots of the Larch Tree,
          Closely sewed the bark together,
          Bound it closely to the framework.                          20
            "Give me of your balm, O Fir Tree!
          Of your balsam and your resin,
          So to close the seams together
          That the water may not enter,
          That the river may not wet me!"
            And the Fir Tree, tall and somber,
          Sobbed through all its robes of darkness,
          Rattled like a shore with pebbles,                           5
          Answered wailing, answered weeping,
          "Take my balm, O Hiawatha!"
            And he took the tears of balsam,
          Took the resin of the Fir Tree,
          Seamed therewith each seam and fissure,                     10
          Made each crevice safe from water.
            "Give me of your quills, O Hedgehog!
          All your quills, O Kagh, the Hedgehog!
          I will make a necklace of them,
          Make a girdle for my beauty,                                15
          And two stars to deck her bosom!"
            From a hollow tree the Hedgehog
          With his sleepy eyes looked at him,
          Shot his shining quills, like arrows,
          Saying, with a drowsy murmur,                               20
          Through the tangle of his whiskers,
          "Take my quills, O Hiawatha!"
            From the ground the quills he gathered,
          All the little shining arrows,
          Stained them red and blue and yellow,
          With the juice of roots and berries;
          Into his canoe he wrought them,
          Round its waist a shining girdle,                            5
          Round its bows a gleaming necklace,
          On its breast two stars resplendent.
            Thus the Birch Canoe was builded,
          In the valley, by the river,
          In the bosom of the forest;                                 10
          And the forest's life was in it,
          All its mystery and its magic,
          All the lightness of the birch tree,
          All the toughness of the cedar,
          All the larch's supple sinews;                              15
          And it floated on the river
          Like a yellow leaf in autumn,
          Like a yellow water lily.
            Paddles none had Hiawatha,
          Paddles none he had or needed,                              20
          For his thoughts as paddles served him,
          And his wishes served to guide him;
          Swift or slow at will he glided,
          Veered to right or left at pleasure.



SABINE BARING-GOULD

ENGLAND, 1834-


Child's Evening Prayer

          Now the day is over,                                         5
            Night is drawing nigh,
          Shadows of the evening
            Steal across the sky.

          Now the darkness gathers,
            Stars begin to peep,
          Birds and beasts and flowers
            Soon will be asleep.

          Through the long night-watches
            May Thine angels spread                                   10
          Their white wings above me,
            Watching round my bed.

          When the morning wakens,
            Then may I arise
          Pure and fresh and sinless                                  15
            In Thy holy eyes.



THIRD YEAR--SECOND HALF


Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean

          O, Columbia, the gem of the ocean,
          The home of the brave and the free,
          The shrine of each patriot's devotion,
          A world offers homage to thee;
          Thy mandates make heroes assemble,                           5
          When Liberty's form stands in view;
          Thy banners make tyranny tremble,
          When borne by the red, white, and blue,
          When borne by the red, white, and blue,
          When borne by the red, white, and blue,                     10
          Thy banners make tyranny tremble,
          When borne by the red, white, and blue.

          When war wing'd its wide desolation,
          And threaten'd the land to deform,
          The ark then of freedom's foundation,                       15
          Columbia rode safe thro' the storm:
          With the garlands of vict'ry around her,
          When so proudly she bore her brave crew,
          With her flag proudly floating before her,
          The boast of the red, white, and blue,
          The boast of the red, white, and blue,                       5
          The boast of the red, white, and blue,
          With her flag proudly floating before her
          The boast of the red, white, and blue.

          The star-spangled banner bring hither,
          O'er Columbia's true sons let it wave;                      10
          May the wreaths they have won never wither,
          Nor its stars cease to shine on the brave.
          May the service united ne'er sever,
          But hold to their colors so true;
          The army and navy forever,                                  15
          Three cheers for the red, white, and blue,
          Three cheers for the red, white, and blue,
          Three cheers for the red, white, and blue,
          The army and navy forever,
          Three cheers for the red, white, and blue.                  20



ROBERT HERRICK

ENGLAND, 1591-1674


Corinna going a-Maying

          Get up, get up, for shame the blooming morn
          Upon her wings presents the gods unshorn.
              See how Aurora throws her fair,
              Fresh-quilted colors through the air;
              Get up, sweet slug-a-bed, and see                        5
              The dew-bespangled herb and tree.

          Each flower has wept, and bowed toward the East
          Above an hour since, yet you are not drest,
              Nay not so much as out of bed,
              When all the birds have matins said,                    10
              And sung their thankful hymns; 'tis sin,
              Nay, profanation to keep in,
          When as a thousand virgins on this day
          Spring sooner than the lark to fetch in May.

          Come, my Corinna, come, and coming, mark
          How each field turns a street--each street a park,
              Made green and trimmed with trees! see how
              Devotion gives each house a bough,
              Or branch! each porch, each door, ere this               5
              An ark, a tabernacle is,
          Made up of whitethorn neatly interwove,
          As if he were those cooler shades of love.
              Can such delights be in the street
              And open fields, and we not see't?                      10
              Come we'll abroad, and let's obey
              The proclamation made for May.
          And sin no more, as we have done, by staying,
          But, my Corinna! come, let's go a-Maying.



JOHN KEATS

ENGLAND, 1795-1821


Sweet Peas

          Here are sweet peas, on tiptoe for a flight:
          With wings of gentle flush o'er delicate white,
          And taper fingers catching at all things,
          To bind them all about with tiny rings.
          Linger awhile upon some bending planks                       5
          That lean against a streamlet's rushy banks,
          And watch intently Nature's gentle doings,
          They will be found softer than ringdove's cooings.
          How silent comes the water round that bend!
          Not the minutest whisper does it send                       10
          To the o'erhanging sallows: blades of grass
          Slowly across the chequer'd shadows pass.



EMILY HUNTINGTON MILLER

AMERICA, 1862-


The Bluebird

          I know the song that the bluebird is singing,
          Out in the apple-tree where he is swinging:
          Brave little fellow! the skies may be dreary:
          Nothing cares he while his heart is so cheery.

          Hark! how the music leaps out from his throat--              5
          Hark! was there ever so merry a note?
          Listen awhile, and you'll hear what he's saying,
          Up in the apple-tree, swinging and swaying.

          "Dear little blossoms, down under the snow,
          You must be weary of winter, I know;                        10
          Hark while I sing you a message of cheer--
          _Summer_ is coming! and _spring-time_ is here!

          "Little white snowdrop! I pray you, arise;
          Bright yellow crocus! come, open your eyes;
          Sweet little violets, hid from the cold,                     5
          Put on your mantles of purple and gold:
          Daffodils! daffodils! say, do you hear?--
          _Summer_ is coming! and _spring-time_ is here!"



ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

SCOTLAND, 1850-1894


Where go the Boats?

          Dark brown is the river,
            Golden is the sand,                                       10
          It flows along forever,
            With trees on either hand.

          Green leaves a-floating,
            Castles of the foam,
          Boats of mine a-boating--
            Where will all come home?

          On goes the river                                            5
            And out past the mill,
          Away down the valley,
            Away down the hill.

          Away down the river,
            A hundred miles or more,                                  10
          Other little children
            Shall bring my boats ashore.



CHARLES LAMB, MARY LAMB

ENGLAND, 1775-1834, ENGLAND, 1764-1847


The Magpie's Nest

          When the arts in their infancy were,
            In a fable of old 'tis expressed
          A wise magpie constructed that rare                         15
            Little house for young birds, called a nest.

          This was talked of the whole country round;
            You might hear it on every bough sung;
          "Now no longer upon the rough ground
            Will fond mothers brood over their young:

          "For the magpie with exquisite skill                         5
            Has invented a moss-covered cell
          Within which a whole family will
            In the utmost security dwell."

          To her mate did each female bird say:
            "Let us fly to the magpie, my dear;                       10
          If she will but teach us the way,
            A nest we will build us up here.

          "It's a thing that's close arched overhead,
            With a hole made to creep out and in;
          We, my bird, might make just such a bed                     15
            If we only knew how to begin."

          To the magpie soon all the birds went,
            And in modest terms made their request,
          That she would be pleased to consent
            To teach them to build up a nest.

          She replied: "I will show you the way,
            So observe everything that I do:
          First, two sticks 'cross each other I lay--"                 5
            "To be sure," said the crow, "why I knew

          "It must be begun with two sticks,
            And I thought that they crossed should be."
          Said the pie, "Then some straw and moss mix
            In the way you now see done by me."                       10

          "Oh, yes, certainly," said the jackdaw,
            "That must follow, of course, I have thought;
          Though I never before building saw,
            I guessed that without being taught."
          "More moss, more straw, and feathers, I place               15
            In this manner," continued the pie.
          "Yes, no doubt, madam, that is the case;
            Though no builder myself, so thought I."

          Whatever she taught them beside,
            In his turn every bird of them said,
          Though the nest-making art he ne'er tried,                   5
            He had just such a thought in his head.

          Still the pie went on showing her art,
            Till the nest she had built up halfway;
          She no more of her skill would impart,
            But in her anger went fluttering away.                    10

          And this speech in their hearing she made,
            As she perched o'er their heads on a tree:
          "If ye all were well skilled in my trade,
            Pray, why came ye to learn it of me?"



MARGARET VANDEGRIFT

AMERICA, 1845-


The Sandman

  The rosy clouds float overhead,
    The sun is going down;
  And now the sandman's gentle tread
    Comes stealing through the town.
  "White sand, white sand," he softly cries,                           5
    And as he shakes his hand,
  Straightway there lies on babies' eyes
    His gift of shining sand.
  Blue eyes, gray eyes, black eyes, and brown,
  As shuts the rose, they softly close, when he goes through
        the town,                                                     10

  From sunny beaches far away--
    Yes, in another land--
  He gathers up at break of day
    His store of shining sand.
  No tempests beat that shore remote,                                 15
    No ships may sail that way;
  His little boat alone may float
    Within that lovely bay.
  Blue eyes, gray eyes, black eyes, and brown,
  As shuts the rose, they softly close, when he goes through the town.

  He smiles to see the eyelids close                                   5
    Above the happy eyes;
  And every child right well he knows,--
    Oh, he is very wise!
  But if, as he goes through the land,
    A naughty baby cries,                                             10
  His other hand takes dull gray sand
    To close the wakeful eyes.
  Blue eyes, gray eyes, black eyes, and brown,
  As shuts the rose, they softly close, when he goes through the town.

  So when you hear the sandman's song                                 15
    Sound through the twilight sweet,
  Be sure you do not keep him long
    A-waiting on the street.
  Lie softly down, dear little head,
    Rest quiet, busy hands,
  Till, by your bed his good night said,
    He strews the shining sands.                                       5
  Blue eyes, gray eyes, black eyes, and brown,
  As shuts the rose, they softly close, when he goes through the town.



MARY HOWITT

ENGLAND, 1804-1888


The Fairies of the Caldon-Low

A MIDSUMMER LEGEND

          "And where have you been, my Mary,
            And where have you been from me?"
          "I've been to the top of the Caldon-Low,                    10
            The midsummer night to see!"

          "And what did you see, my Mary,
            All up on the Caldon-Low?"
          "I saw the blithe sunshine come down,
            And I saw the merry winds blow."                          15
          "And what did you hear, my Mary,
            All up on the Caldon Hill?"
          "I heard the drops the water made,
            And I heard the corn-ears fill."

          "Oh, tell me all, my Mary--                                  5
            All, all that ever you know;
          For you must have seen the fairies
            Last night on the Caldon-Low."

          "Then take me on your knee, mother,
            And listen, mother of mine:                               10
          A hundred fairies danced last night,
            And the harpers they were nine;

          "And merry was the glee of the harp-strings,
            And their dancing feet so small;
          But, oh! the sound of their talking                         15
            Was merrier far than all!"

          "And what were the words, my Mary,
            That you did hear them say?"
          "I'll tell you all, my mother,
            But let me have my way.                                   20
          "And some they played with the water,
            And rolled it down the hill;
          'And this,' they said, 'shall speedily turn
            The poor old miller's mill;

          "'For there has been no water                                5
            Ever since the first of May;
          And a busy man shall the miller be
            By the dawning of the day!

          "'Oh, the miller, how he will laugh,
            When he sees the mill-dam rise!                           10
          The jolly old miller, how he will laugh
            Till the tears fill both his eyes!'

          "And some they seized the little winds,
            That sounded over the hill,
          And each put a horn into his mouth,                         15
            And blew so sharp and shrill:

          "'And there,' said they, 'the merry winds go
            Away from every horn;
          And those shall clear the mildew dank
            From the blind old widow's corn:                          20
          "'Oh, the poor blind widow--
            Though she has been blind so long,
          She'll be merry enough when the mildew's gone,
            And the corn stands stiff and strong!'

          "And some they brought the brown linseed,                    5
            And flung it down from the Low:
          'And this,' said they, 'by the sunrise,
            In the weaver's croft shall grow!

          "'Oh, the poor lame weaver!
            How he will laugh outright                                10
          When he sees his dwindling flax-field
            All full of flowers by night!'

          "And then up spoke a brownie,
            With a long beard on his chin:
          'I have spun up all the tow,' said he,                      15
            'And I want some more to spin.

          "'I've spun a piece of hempen cloth,
            And I want to spin another--
          A little sheet for Mary's bed,
            And an apron for her mother.'

          "And with that I could not help but laugh,
            And I laughed out loud and free;
          And then on top of the Caldon-Low                            5
            There was no one left but me.

          "And all on top of the Caldon-Low
            The mists were cold and gray,
          And nothing I saw but the mossy stones
            That round about me lay.                                  10

          "But, as I came down from the hill-top,
            I heard, afar below,
          How busy the jolly miller was,
            And how merry the wheel did go.

          "And I peeped into the widow's field,                       15
            And sure enough were seen
          The yellow ears of the mildewed corn
            All standing stiff and green!

          "And down by the weaver's croft I stole,
            To see if the flax were high;
          But I saw the weaver at his gate,
            With the good news in his eye!

          "Now this is all I heard, mother,                            5
            And all that I did see;
          So, prithee, make my bed, mother,
            For I'm tired as I can be!"



FELICIA DOROTHEA HEMANS

ENGLAND, 1793-1835


Night-scented Flowers

          "Call back your odors, lonely flowers,
            From the night-wind call them back;                       10
          And fold your leaves till the laughing hours
            Come forth in the sunbeam's track.

          "The lark lies couched in her grassy nest,
            And the honey-bee is gone,
          And all bright things are away to rest;                     15
            Why watch ye here alone?"

          "Nay, let our shadowy beauty bloom
            When the stars give quiet light,
          And let us offer our faint perfume
            On the silent shrine of night.

          "Call it not wasted, the scent we lend                       5
            To the breeze when no step is nigh:
          Oh! thus forever the earth should send
            Her grateful breath on high!

          "And love us as emblems, night's dewy flowers,
            Of hopes unto sorrow given,                               10
          That spring through the gloom of the darkest hours,
            Looking alone to heaven."



JOHN GREENLEAF WHITTIER

AMERICA, 1807-1892


Indian Summer

              From gold to gray
              Our mild, sweet day
          Of Indian summer fades too soon;                            15
              But tenderly
              Above the sea
          Hangs, white and calm, the hunter's moon.

              In its pale fire
              The village spire                                        5
          Shows like the zodiac's spectral lance;
              The painted walls
              Whereon it falls
          Transfigured stand in marble trance.



ALICE CARY

AMERICA, 1820-1871


November

          The leaves are fading and falling,                          10
            The winds are rough and wild,
          The birds have ceased their calling,
            But let me tell you, my child,

          Though day by day, as it closes,
            Doth darker and colder grow,                              15
          The roots of the bright red roses
            Will keep alive in the snow.

          And when the winter is over
            The boughs will get new leaves,
          The quail will come back to the clover,
            And the swallow back to the eaves.

          The robin will wear on his bosom                             5
            A vest that is bright and new,
          And the loveliest wayside blossoms
            Will shine with the sun and dew.

          The leaves to-day are whirling,
            The brooks are all dry and dumb,                          10
          But let me tell you, my darling,
            The spring will be sure to come.

          There must be rough, cold weather,
            And winds and rains so wild;
          Not all good things together                                15
            Come to us here, my child.

          So when some dear joy loses
            Its beauteous summer glow,
          Think how the roots of the roses
            Are kept alive in the snow.                               20



JOHN GREENLEAF WHITTIER


The Frost Spirit

  He comes,--he comes,--the Frost Spirit comes! You may trace his
      footsteps now
  On the naked woods and the blasted fields and the brown hill's
      withered brow.
  He has smitten the leaves of the gray old trees where their
      pleasant green came forth,
  And the winds, which follow wherever he goes, have shaken them
      down to earth.

  He comes,--he comes,--the Frost Spirit comes!--from the frozen
      Labrador,--                                                      5
  From the icy bridge of the Northern seas, which the white bear
      wanders o'er,--
  Where the fisherman's sail is stiff with ice, and the luckless
      forms below
  In the sunless cold of the lingering night into marble statues
      grow!

  He comes,--he comes,--the Frost Spirit comes!--on the rushing
      Northern blast,
  And the dark Norwegian pines have bowed as his fearful breath
      went past.
  With an unscorched wing he has hurried on, where the fires of
      Hecla glow
  On the darkly beautiful sky above and the ancient ice below.

  He comes,--he comes,--the Frost Spirit comes!--and the quiet lake
      shall feel                                                       5
  The torpid touch of his glazing breath, and ring to the skater's
      heel;
  And the streams which danced on the broken rocks, or sang to the
      leaning grass,
  Shall bow again to their winter chain, and in mournful silence pass.

  He comes,--he comes,--the Frost Spirit comes!--let us meet him as we
      may,
  And turn with the light of the parlor-fire his evil power away;
  And gather closer the circle round, when that firelight dances high,
  And laugh at the shriek of the baffled Fiend as his sounding wing goes
      by!



ALFRED TENNYSON

ENGLAND, 1809-1892


The Owl


I

          When cats run home and the light is come
            And the dew is cold upon the ground,                       5
          And the far-off stream is dumb,
            And the whirring sail goes round,
            And the whirring sail goes round;
              Alone and warming his five wits,
              The white owl in the belfry sits.                       10


II

          When merry milkmaids click the latch,
            And rarely smells the new-mown hay,
          And the cock hath sung beneath the thatch
            Twice or thrice his roundelay,
            Twice or thrice his roundelay;
              Alone and warming his five wits,
              The white owl in the belfry sits.                        5



GEORGE MACDONALD

SCOTLAND, 1824-


The Wind and the Moon

          Said the Wind to the Moon, "I will blow you out.
          You stare
          In the air
          Like a ghost in a chair,
          Always looking what I am about;                             10
          I hate to be watched; I will blow you out."

          The Wind blew hard, and out went the Moon.
          So, deep,
          On a heap
          Of clouds, to sleep,
          Down lay the Wind, and slumbered soon--
          Muttering low, "I've done for that Moon."

          He turned in his bed; she was there again!                   5
          On high
          In the sky,
          With her one ghost eye,
          The Moon shone white and alive and plain.
          Said the Wind--"I will blow you out again."                 10

          The Wind blew hard, and the Moon grew dim.
          "With my sledge
          And my wedge
          I have knocked off her edge!
          If only I blow right fierce and grim,                       15
          The creature will soon be dimmer than dim."

          He blew and blew, and she thinned to a thread.
          "One puff
          More's enough
          To blow her to snuff!
          One good puff more where the last was bred,                  5
          And glimmer, glimmer, glum will go the thread!"

          He blew a great blast and the thread was gone;
          In the air
          Nowhere
          Was a moonbeam bare;                                        10
          Far off and harmless the shy stars shone;
          Sure and certain the Moon was gone!

          The Wind he took to his revels once more;
          On down
          In town,                                                    15
          Like a merry mad clown,
          He leaped and hallooed with whistle and roar,
          "What's that?" The glimmering thread once more!

          He flew in a rage--he danced and blew;
          But in vain
          Was the pain
          Of his bursting brain;                                       5
          For still the broader the Moon-scrap grew,
          The broader he swelled his big cheeks and blew.

          Slowly she grew--till she filled the night,
          And shone
          On her throne                                               10
          In the sky alone,
          A matchless, wonderful, silvery light,
          Radiant and lovely, the Queen of the Night.

          Said the Wind--"What a marvel of power am I!
          With my breath,                                             15
          Good faith!
          I blew her to death--
          First blew her away right out of the sky--
          Then blew her in; what a strength am I!"

          But the Moon she knew nothing about the affair,
          For, high
          In the sky,                                                  5
          With her one white eye,
          Motionless, miles above the air,
          She had never heard the great Wind blare.



JAMES T. FIELDS

AMERICA, 1817-1881


The Tempest

          We were crowded in the cabin,
            Not a soul would dare to sleep,--                         10
          It was midnight on the waters,
            And a storm was on the deep.

          'Tis a fearful thing in winter
            To be shattered in the blast,
          And to hear the rattling trumpet
            Thunder, "Cut away the mast!"

          So we shuddered there in silence,--
            For the stoutest held his breath,
          While the hungry sea was roaring,                            5
            And the breakers talked with Death.

          As thus we sat in darkness,
            Each one busy in his prayers,--
          "We are lost!" the captain shouted,
            As he staggered down the stairs.                          10

          But his little daughter whispered,
            As she took his icy hand,
          "Is not God upon the ocean,
            Just the same as on the land?"

          Then we kissed the little maiden,                           15
            And we spoke in better cheer;
          And we anchored safe in harbor
            When the morn was shining clear.



CLEMENT C. MOORE

AMERICA, 1779-1863


A Visit from St. Nicholas

  'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
  Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
  The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
  In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
  The children were nestled all snug in their beds,                    5
  While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
  And Mamma in her kerchief, and I in my cap,
  Had just settled our brains for a long winter's nap,
  When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
  I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
  Away to the window I flew like a flash,
  Tore open the shatters and threw up the sash.
  The moon, on the breast of the new-fallen snow,
  Gave a luster of midday to objects below;                            5
  When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
  But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
  With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
  I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
  More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,                      10
  And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:
  "Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
  On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen--
  To the top of the porch, to the top of the wall!
  Now, dash away, dash away, dash away, all!"
  As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
  When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
  So, up to the house-top the coursers they flew,                      5
  With the sleigh full of toys--and St. Nicholas, too.
  And then in a twinkling I heard on the roof
  The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
  As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
  Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.                    10
  He was dressed all in fur from his head to his foot,
  And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
  A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
  And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
  His eyes how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
  His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry;
  His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,                      5
  And the beard on his chin was as white as the snow.
  The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
  And the smoke, it encircled his head like a wreath;
  He had a broad face and a little round belly
  That shook, when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.             10
  He was chubby and plump--a right jolly old elf;
  And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself.
  A wink of his eye, and a twist of his head,
  Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
  He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
  And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
  And laying his finger aside of his nose,                             5
  And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.
  He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
  And away they all flew like the down of a thistle;
  But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
  "Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"                  10



WILLIAM WORDSWORTH

ENGLAND, 1770-1850


Lucy Gray

          Oft I had heard of Lucy Gray;
            And, when I crossed the wild,
          I chanced to see at break of day
            The solitary child.

          No mate, no comrade, Lucy knew;                              5
            She dwelt on a wide moor,--
          The sweetest thing that ever grew
            Beside a human door!

          You yet may spy the fawn at play,
            The hare upon the green;                                  10
          But the sweet face of Lucy Gray
            Will never more be seen.

          "To-night will be a stormy night--
            You to the town must go:
          And take a lantern, child, to light                         15
            Your mother through the snow."

          "That, father, will I gladly do:
            'Tis scarcely afternoon--
          The minster-clock has just struck two;
            And yonder is the moon."

          At this the father raised his hook,                          5
            And snapped a fagot-band;
          He plied his work;--and Lucy took
            The lantern in her hand.

          Not blither is the mountain roe:
            With many a wanton stroke                                 10
          Her feet disperse the powdery snow,
            That rises up like smoke.

          The storm came on before its time,
            She wandered up and down;
          And many a hill did Lucy climb,                             15
            But never reached the town.

          The wretched parents all that night
            Went shouting far and wide;
          But there was neither sound nor sight
            To serve them for a guide.                                20
          At daybreak on a hill they stood
            That overlooked the moor;
          And thence they saw the bridge of wood,
            A furlong from their door.

          They wept--and, turning homeward, cried,                     5
            "In heaven we all shall meet!"
          When in the snow the mother spied
            The print of Lucy's feet.

          Then downwards from the steep hill's edge
            They tracked the footmarks small;                         10
          And through the broken hawthorn hedge,
            And by the low stone wall:

          And then an open field they crossed;
            The marks were still the same;
          They tracked them on, nor ever lost;                        15
            And to the bridge they came.

          They follow from the snowy bank
            Those footmarks, one by one,
          Into the middle of the plank;
            And further there were none!                              20
          --Yet some maintain that to this day
            She is a living child;
          That you may see sweet Lucy Gray
            Upon the lonesome wild.

          O'er rough and smooth she trips along.                       5
            And never looks behind;
          And sings a solitary song
            That whistles in the wind.



WILLIAM BRIGHTLY RANDS

ENGLAND, 1823-1880


The Wonderful World

          Great, wide, wonderful, beautiful world,
          With the beautiful water about you curled,                  10
          And the wonderful grass upon your breast--
          World, you are beautifully dressed!

          The wonderful air is over me,
          And the wonderful wind is shaking the tree;
          It walks on the water and whirls the mills,                 15
          And talks to itself on the tops of the hills.

          You friendly earth, how far do you go,
          With wheat fields that nod, and rivers that flow,
          And cities and gardens, and oceans and isles,
          And people upon you for thousands of miles?

          Ah, you are so great and I am so small,                      5
          I hardly can think of you, world, at all;
          And yet, when I said my prayers to-day,
          A whisper within me seemed to say:
          "You are more than the earth, though you're such a dot;
          You can love and think, and the world cannot."              10



WILLIAM WORDSWORTH

ENGLAND, 1770-1850


To a Child

WRITTEN IN HER ALBUM

          Small service is true service while it lasts.
            Of humblest friends, bright creature! scorn not one:
          The daisy, by the shadow that it casts,
            Protects the lingering dewdrop from the sun.



CHRISTINA G. ROSSETTI

ENGLAND, 1830-1894


Consider

            Consider
          The lilies of the field whose bloom is brief:
            We are as they;                                            5
          Like them we fade away,
            As doth a leaf.

            Consider
          The sparrows of the air of small account:
            Our God doth view                                         10
          Whether they fall or mount,--
            He guards us too.

            Consider
          The lilies that do neither spin nor toil,
            Yet are most fair:                                        15
          What profits all this care
            And all this toil?

            Consider
          The birds that have no barn nor harvest-weeks;
            God gives them food:
          Much more our Father seeks
            To do us good.                                             5



SIR WALTER SCOTT

SCOTLAND, 1771-1832


Lullaby of an Infant Chief

  Oh, hush thee, my baby, thy sire was a knight,
  Thy mother a lady, both lovely and bright;
  The woods and the glens from the tower which we see,
  They all are belonging, dear baby, to thee.

  Oh, fear not the bugle, though loudly it blows,                     10
  It calls but the warders that guard thy repose;
  Their bows would be bended, their blades would be red,
  Ere the step of a foeman draws near to thy bed.

  Oh, hush thee, my baby, the time will soon come,
  When thy sleep shall be broken by trumpet and drum;
  Then hush thee, my darling, take rest while you may,
  For strife comes with manhood, and waking with day.                  5



EUGENE FIELD

AMERICA, 1850-1895


Dutch Lullaby[2]

          Wynken, Blynken, and Nod one night
            Sailed off in a wooden shoe--
          Sailed on a river of crystal light,
            Into a sea of dew.
           "Where are you going, and what do you wish?"               10
            The old moon asked the three.
           "We have come to fish for the herring fish
            That live in this beautiful sea;
            Nets of silver and gold have we!"
                      Said Wynken,
                      Blynken,
                      And Nod.                                         5

          The old moon laughed and sang a song,
            As they rocked in the wooden shoe,
          And the wind that sped them all night long
            Ruffled the waves of dew.
          The little stars were the herring fish                      10
            That lived in that beautiful sea--
          "Now cast your nets wherever you wish--
            Never afeard are we";
            So cried the stars to the fishermen three:
                      Wynken,                                         15
                      Blynken,
                      And Nod.

          All night long their nets they threw
            To the stars in the twinkling foam--
          Then down from the skies came the wooden shoe,              20
            Bringing the fishermen home;
           "Twas all so pretty a sail it seemed
            As if it could not be,
          And some folks thought 'twas a dream they'd dreamed
            Of sailing that beautiful sea--
            But I shall name you the fishermen three:                  5
                      Wynken,
                      Blynken,
                      And Nod.

          Wynken and Blynken are two little eyes:
            And Nod is a little head,                                 10
          And the wooden shoe that sailed the skies
            Is a wee one's trundle-bed.
          So shut your eyes while mother sings
            Of wonderful sights that be,
          And you shall see the beautiful things                      15
            As you rock in the misty sea,
            Where the old shoe rocked the fishermen three:
                      Wynken,
                      Blynken,
                      And Nod.                                        20



FOOTNOTE:

[2] From "Poems of Childhood," published by Messrs. Charles Scribner's
Sons.



EUGENE FIELD

AMERICA, 1850-1895


The Night Wind[3]

          Have you ever heard the wind go "Yoooo"?
            'Tis a pitiful sound to hear!
          It seems to chill you through and through
            With a strange and speechless fear.
          'Tis the voice of the night that broods outside              5
            When folks should be asleep,
          And many and many's the time I've cried
          To the darkness brooding far and wide
            Over the land and the deep:
           "Whom do you want, O lonely night,                         10
            That you wail the long hours through?"
          And the night would say in its ghostly way:
                       "Yoooooooo!
                        Yoooooooo!
                        Yoooooooo!"                                   15

          My mother told me long ago
            (When I was a little lad)
          That when the wind went wailing so
            Somebody had been bad;
          And then, when I was snug in bed,
            Whither I had been sent,
          With the blankets pulled up round my head,                   5
          I'd think of what my mother'd said,
            And wonder what boy she meant!
          And "Who's been bad to-day?" I'd ask
            Of the wind that hoarsely blew,
          And the voice would say in its meaningful way:              10
                       "Yoooooooo!
                        Yoooooooo!
                        Yoooooooo!"

          That this was true I must allow--
            You'll not believe it, though!                            15
          Yes, though I'm quite a model now,
            I was not always so.
          And if you doubt what things I say,
            Suppose you make the test;
          Suppose, when you've been bad some day                      20
          And up to bed are sent away
            From mother and the rest--
          Suppose you ask, "Who has been bad?"
            And then you'll hear what's true;
          For the wind will moan in its ruefulest tone:
                       "Yoooooooo!
                        Yoooooooo!                                     5
                        Yoooooooo!"


FOOTNOTE:

[3] From "Poems of Childhood," published by Messrs. Charles Scribner's
Sons.



THOMAS BAILEY ALDRICH

AMERICA, 1836-


Marjorie's Almanac[4]

          Robins in the tree top,
            Blossoms in the grass,
          Green things a-growing
            Everywhere you pass
          Sudden little breezes,                                       5
            Showers of silver dew,
          Black bough and bent twig
            Budding out anew;
          Pine tree and willow tree,
            Fringed elm, and larch,--
          Don't you think that May-time's
            Pleasanter than March?

          Apples in the orchard                                        5
            Mellowing one by one;
          Strawberries upturning
            Soft cheeks to the sun;
          Roses faint with sweetness,
            Lilies fair of face,                                      10
          Drowsy scents and murmurs
            Haunting every place;
          Lengths of golden sunshine,
            Moonlight bright as day--
          Don't you think that summer's                               15
            Pleasanter than May?

          Roger in the corn patch
            Whistling negro songs;
          Pussy by the hearth side
            Romping with the tongs;                                   20
          Chestnuts in the ashes,
            Bursting through the rind;
          Red leaf and gold leaf
            Rustling down the wind;
          Mother "doin' peaches"
            All the afternoon,--                                       5
          Don't you think that autumn's
            Pleasanter than June?

          Little fairy snow-flakes
            Dancing in the flue;
          Old Mr. Santa Claus,                                        10
            What is keeping you?
          Twilight and firelight
            Shadows come and go;
          Merry chime of sleigh bells
            Tinkling through the snow;                                15
          Mother knitting stockings,
            Pussy's got the ball,
          Don't you think that winter's
            Pleasanter than all?


FOOTNOTE:

[4] Selections from Thomas B. Aldrich are used by permission of, and by
special arrangement with, Houghton, Mifflin & Co., publishers of his
works.



M. BETHAM EDWARDS

AMERICA, 1836-


A Child's Prayer

          God make my life a little light,
            Within the world to glow--
          A tiny flame that burneth bright,
            Wherever I may go.

          God make my life a little flower,                            5
            That bringeth joy to all,
          Content to bloom in native bower,
            Although its place be small.

          God make my life a little song,
            That comforteth the sad,                                  10
          That helpeth others to be strong,
            And makes the singer glad.

       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber's Notes:

Page 53, the line number for line 5 was added.

Page 59, the line number 5 was moved up one line.

Page 63, single quotation mark changed to a double quotation mark. ("The
lark lies)





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