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Saw the windy moors rejoicing in their
tapestry of fern, And the stately weeds and rushes, that to
dusty dryness turn.
Autumn walked in glee and triumph, over
mountain, wood, and plain, And he look'd upon their richness as a king
on his domain; All too soon he waned and vanish'd over misty
heaths and meres, And the New Year stood beside me like a man
of fifty years.
IV. In the foggy cloud obscurely, entered Winter,
ashy pale, And his step was hard and heavy, and he
wore an icy mail; Blasting all the path before him, leapt a black
wind from the north, And from stinging drifts of sleet he forged the
arrows of his wrath.
Yet some beauty still was found, for when the
fogs had pass'd away, The wide lands came glittering forward in a
fresh and strange array; Naked trees had got snow foliage, soft, and
feathery, and bright,
And the earth look'd dress'd for heaven in its
Black and cold as iron armor lay the frozen
lakes and streams, Round about the fenny plashes shone the long
and pointed gleams Of the tall reeds, ice encrusted; the old
hollies, jewel spread, Warm'd the white marmoreal chillness with
an ardency of red.
Upon desolate morasses stood the heron like a
ghost, Beneath the gliding shadows of the wild fowl's
noisy host; And the bittern clamor'd harshly from his
nest among the sedge, Where the indistinct dull moss had blurred
the rugged water's edge.
But the face of Winter soften’d, and his lips
broke into smiles, And his heart was fill'd with radiance as
from far enchanted isles ; For across the long horizon came a light upon
the wayThe light of Christmas fires, and the dawning
of new day.
And Winter moved not onward like the rest,
but made a stand, And he took the Spirit of Christmas, as a
brother, by the hand; And together tow'rd the heavens a great cry
of joy they sentAnd the New Year was the Old Year, and his
head was grey and bent.
Then another New Year enter'd, like another
dancing child, With his tresses as a glory, and his glances
bright and wild ; And he flash'd his odorous torch, and he
laugh'd out in the place, And his soul looked forth in joy, and made
a sunshine on his face.
Out from spire, and from turret, peal'd the
sudden New Year bells, Like the distant songs of angels in their
fields of asphodels; And that lustrous child went sparkling to his
aged father's side, And the New Year kissed the Old Year, and
the Old Year gently died.
3. D. Wiffent. HARK to the merry gossip of the springThe sweet mysterious voice which peoples place With an Italian beauty, and does bring As 'twere Elysium from the wilds of space. Where'er her wing inhabits, give it chase; In other bowers the fairy shouts again; Where'er we run it mocks our rapid race Still the same loose note in a golden chain, Rings through the vocal woods and fills with
joy the plain.
Hail to the shouting cuckoo ! In my youth
And thus I love thee still-thy monotone-
And when thy voice, sweet sybil, all is flown.
9. Clare. WELCOME, pale primrose, starting up between Dead matted leaves of ash and oak, which
strew The every lawn and wood and spinney thro', 'Mid creeping moss and ivy's darker green. How much thy presence beautifies the ground, How sweet thy modest unaffected pride Glows on the
bank and wood's warm side; And where thy fairy flowers in groups are
found, The school boy roams enchantedly along, Plucking the fairest with a rude delight; While the meek shepherd stops his simple song, To gaze a moment on the pleasing sight; O’erjoyed to see the flowers that truly bring, The welcome news of sweet returning spring.