Littell's Living Age/Volume 137/Issue 1769/Spring Songs

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Wake ye, oh! wake thro' the echoing wood,
     Sweet birds with songs that are blither than laughter!
Tell us once more how the spring-tide's new blood
     Flushes and mantles each dim forest rafter!

Did they not hear you, and know you full well,
     They who once wandered thro' Eden's bright bowers?
Knew not the wisest of monarchs your spell,
     Oft as ye woke by the temple's fair towers?

Constant your voice as the radiant stars
     Shining in beauty far o'er the lone mountain,
Dear to all time as the summer-blue skies,
     Fresh as the crystal light thrown from the fountain!

Yes, I can think of the millions of men
     List'ning and loving your sweet songs before me.
Ay! and of millions more list'ning again,
     When the long grass shall wave silently o'er me.

Blithe little birds! ye are singing to-day
     Sweetest of all where our dear dead are sleeping;
There, by the old church walls, timeworn and grey,
     Rising thro' bright ivy-wreaths round them creeping,

Over the cold dust that never again
     Knoweth a care for the fast-coming morrow;
Lips that are silent, and hearts free from pain,
     Eyes that have long closed forever on sorrow.

Well for us all that it rings out so clear,
     This your glad song o'er the low graves before us!
Bravely you tell of that spring drawing near
     When the dark winter of death shall pass o'er us.

Wake then, oh! wake thro' the echoing wood,
     Sweet birds with songs that are blither than laughter!
Wake ye! and sing how the spring-tide's new blood
     Flushes and mantles each dim forest rafter!