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0 God! have mercy in this dreadful hour
And the wild sea that to the tempest raves;To gaze amid the horrors of the night,
But now, leaving the stern and melancholy features of March, let us go abroad upon a day such as the poet has described below:
March in his wakening strength! The west wind, load,
Rising in vigorous and sonorous play,
At once has hurried from the heavens away
Their slumbrous guests of shadow and of cloud.
The earth smiles greenly, as if glad and proud
To feel the sunlight, faintly though it fall.
But what a rich transparency o'er all I
Sky, air, and rushing waters, are endowed
With a surpassing brightness, clear and blue.
Flushed are the far woods, and a violet hue
Tinges the far horizon. 'Tis a day
That breathes its vigour through heart, soul, and frame;
Cares, like the clouds, and pains are chased away.
Oh! for a life where each day was the same!
The influence of the day is upon us, and with hearts joyous as those of little children, let us gather a handful of daisies,
Those pearled Arcturi of the earth, The constellated flower that never sets;
and first one well preserved from old Chaucer:
The Daisie, a flowre white and rede,
Above all flowres in the mede,
Than love I most those flowres white and rede,
Such that they callen Daisies in our town.
And now, dewy and fresh from the hand of a young poet:
A gold and silver cup
Upon a pillar green.
To catch the sunshine in:—
To show each radiant hour:—
A sun-observing flower.
The children with delight
To meet the Daisy run;
She shines upon the sun:
Demurely doth she bend,
The little children's friend.
Out in the field she's seen,
A simple rustic maid,
And clean white frill arrayed;
Of hope by fancy spun,
Awaiting to be won.
The dandy Butterfly,
All exquisitely drest,
Displays his velvet vest:
In all that gaudy show;
With such a foppish beau 1
THE DAISY. 99
The vagrant Bee but sings
For what he gets thereby;
His pocket on his thigh;
And woo some wealthier flower;
She hath no honey-dower.
The Gnat, old back-bent fellow,
In frugal frieze coat drest,
His tottering limbs to rest;
Voice thin, and aspect sage;
What part hath youth with age?
She lifteth up her cup,
She gazeth on the sky;
Whether to live or die;
To stand, in shine and shower;
A golden-bosomed flower.
It is a pleasant croft
Where "winged kine " may graze;
Quadrille-ground for young fays;
With clean white pales fenced round,
Nor must we omit two others which may justly be termed perennial.
TO A MOUNTAIN DAISY,
ON TURNINQ ONE DOWN WITH THE PLOUGH IN APRIL, 1786.
Wee, modest, crimson-tipped flow'r,
Thy slender stem;
Thou bonnie gem.
Alas 1 its no thy neebor sweet,
Wi' speckled breast,
The purpling east.
Cauld blew the bitter-biting north
Amid the storm,
Thy tender form.
The flaunting flowers our gardens yield,
0' clod or stane, Adorns the lintie stibble field,
There, in thy scanty mantle clad,
In humble guise;
And low thou lies I
Ev*n thou who mourn'st the Daisy's fate,
Full on thy bloom;
Shall be thy doom. Burns.
TO A DAISY.
There is a flower, a little flower,
The prouder beauties of the field