Littell's Living Age/Volume 149/Issue 1921/Signs of Spring

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Signs of Spring

Though meadows still are sere, and hillsides dun,
Nor in the forest any bud is seen,
Yet the wet moss beneath the oak is green,
Where gleams with kindlier ray the setting sun,
And through the trees the distant hills are fair,
Touched with a tint of spring's ethereal blue;
In sunny pastures streaks of emerald hue
Show where a brook is wandering slowly there.
And sudden, on a soft and starless night,
The myriad voices of the insect world
Wake from their winter sleep with new delight,
And a far river, with its waters whirled,
Doth wildly rush, loosed from its icy chain,
Turbulent, glad — and spring has come again!

Come to the woods, the soft and balmy air,
Blows upward from the south, and wooes us sweet,
And since spring is abroad, come, let us greet
The beauty of her presence everywhere.
Come to the forest, where the oak-trees stand
Like giant patriarchs through the changing year,
The autumn leaves are rustling pale and sere
Among their branches, — yet a flowery hand
I see beneath them; ah! what secrets sweet,
And little tenderest blossoms do unfold
Here in this spot beside the oak-trees old,
Like fair young children, tired from their play,
Who seek for shelter, I behold to-day
A vision of wind-flowers blowing at their feet!