A Word to the Wise

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A Word to the Wise  (1858) 
by Anonymous
Unattributed 1858 poem. Featured in Vol 1., No.7 of The Atlantic Monthly.

A Word to the Wise

  Love hailed a little maid,
  Romping through the meadow:
    Heedless in the sun she played,
  Scornful of the shadow.
    "Come with me," whispered he;
  "Listen, sweet, to love and reason."
    "By and by," she mocked reply;
      "Love's not in season."

    Years went, years came;
  Light mixed with shadow.
    Love met the maid again,
  Dreaming through the meadow.
    "Not so coy," urged the boy;
  "List in time to love and reason."
    "By and by," she mused reply;
      "Love's still in season."

    Years went, years came;
  Light changed to shadow.
    Love saw the maid again,
  Waiting in the meadow.
    "Pass no more; my dream is o'er;
  I can listen now to reason."
    "Keep thee coy," mocked the boy;
      "Love's out of season."

This work published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.