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The stormy March is come at last,
With wind, and cloud, and changing skies: I hear the rushing of the blast,
That through the snowy valley flies.
Ah ! passing few are they who speak,
Wild, stormy month, in praise of thee; Yet, though thy winds are loud and bleak,
Thou art a welcome month to me.
For thou to northern lands again,
The glad and glorious sun dost bring, And thou hast joined the gentle train,
And wear'st the gentle name of Spring.
And, in thy reign of blast and storm,
Smiles many a long, bright, sunny day, When the changed winds are soft and warm,
And heaven puts on the blue of May. Then sing aloud the gushing rills
And the full springs, from frost set free, Tbat, brightly leaping down the hills,
Are just set out to meet the sea.
The year's departing beauty hides
Of wintry storms the sullen threat; But, in thy sternest frown, abides
A look of kindly promise yet.
Thou bring'st the hope of those calm skies,
And that soft time of sunny showers, When the wide bloom, on earth that lies,
Seems of a brighter world than ours.
When the warm sun, that brings Seed-time and harvest, has returned again, 'Tis sweet to visit the still wood, where springs
The first flower of the plain.
I love the season well,
When forest glades are teeming with bright forms,
Nor dark and many-folded clouds foretell
The coming-in of storms.
From the earth's loosened mould
The sapling draws its sustenance, and thrives :
Though stricken to the heart with winter's cold,
The drooping tree revives.
The softly-warbled song Comes through the pleasant woods, and coloured wings Are glancing in the golden sun, along
The forest openings.
And when bright sunset fills The silver woods with light, the green slope throws Its shadows in the hollows of the hills,
And wide the upland glows.
And when the day is gone,
In the blue lake, the sky, o'erreaching far,
Is hollowed out, and the moon dips her horn,
And twinkles many a star.
Inverted in the tide Stand the gray rocks, and trembling shadows throw, And the fair trees look over, side by side,
And see themselves below.
Sweet April, many a thought
Is wedded unto thee, as hearts are wed;
Nor shall they fail, till, to its autumn brought,
Life's golden fruit is shed.
I FEEL a newer life in every gale;
The winds, that fan the flowers,
And with their welcome breathings fill the sail,
Tell of serener hours,
Or hours that glide unfelt away
Beneath the sky of May.
The spirit of the gentle south-wind calls
From his blue throne of air,
And where his whispering voice in music falls,
Beauty is budding there;
The bright ones of the valley break
Their slumbers, and awake.
The waving verdure rolls along the plain,
And the wide forest weaves,
To welcome back its playful mates again,
A canopy of leaves;
And, from its darkening shadow, floats
A gush of trembling notes.
Fairer and brighter spreads the reign of May;
The tresses of the woods,
With the light dallying of the west-wind play;
And the full-brimming floods,
As gladly to their goal they run,
Hail the returning sun.
The Voice of Spring.--MRS. HEM'ANS.
COME, I come ye have called me long,
I come o'er the mountains with light and song!
Ye may trace my step o'er the wakening earth,
By the winds which tell of the violet's birth,
By the primrose-stars in the shadowy grass,
By the green leaves opening as I pass.
I have breathed on the South, and the chestnut-flowers,
By thousands, have burst from the forest-bowers,
And the ancient graves, and the fallen fanes,
Are veiled with wreaths on Italian plains.
But it is not for
hour of bloom, To speak of the ruin or the tomb !
I have passed o'er the hills of the stormy North,
And the larch has hung all his tassels forth,
The fisher is out on the sunny sea,
And the rein-deer bounds through the pasture free,
And the pine has a fringe of softer green,
And the moss looks bright where my step has been.
I have sent through the wood-paths a gentle sigh,
And called out each voice of the deep blue sky,
From the night-bird's lay through the starry time,
In the groves of the soft Hesperian clime,
To the swan's wild note by the Iceland lakes,
When the dark fir-bough into verdure breaks.
From the streams and founts I have loosed the chain;
They are sweeping on to the silvery main,
They are flashing down from the mountain-brows,
They are flinging spray on the forest boughs,
They are bursting fresh from their sparry caves,
And the earth resounds with the joy of waves.
Come forth, Oye children of gladness, come!
Where the violets lie may
Ye of the rose-cheek and dew-bright eye,
And the bounding footstep, to meet me fly,
With the lyre, and the wreath, and the joyous lay:
Come forth to the sunshine : I may not stay!
Away from the dwellings of care-worn men,
The waters are sparkling in wood and glen;.
Away from the chamber and dusky hearth,
The young leaves are dancing in breezy mirth ;
Their light stems thrill to the wild-wood strains,
And youth is abroad in my green domains.
But ye !-ye are changed since ye met me last;
A shade of earth has been round you cast !
There is that come over your brow and eye
Which speaks of a world where the flowers must die!
Ye smile !--but your smile hath a dimness yet-
-Oh! what have ye looked on since last we met?
Ye are changed, ye are changed !--and I see not here
All whom I saw in the vanished year!
There were graceful heads, with their ringlets bright,
Which tossed in the breeze with a play of light;
There were eyes, in whose glistening laughter lay
No faint remembrance of dull decay.
There were steps, that flew o'er the cowslip's head,
As if for a banquet all earth were spread ;
There were voices that rung through the sapphire sky,
And had not a sound of mortality!
-Are they gone?—is their mirth from the green hills passed?
-Ye have looked on Death since ye met me last!
I know whence the shadow comes o'er ye now:
Ye have strown the dust on the sunny brow!
Ye have given the lovely to Earth's embrace;
She hath taken the fairest of Beauty's race !
With their laughing eyes and their festal crown,
They are gone from amongst you in silence down!
They are gone from amongst you, the bright and fair ;
Ye have lost the gleam of their shining hair!
-But I know of a world where there falls no blight:
I shall find them there, with their eyes of light!
Where Death, midst the blooms of the morn, may dwell,
I tarry no longer :-farewell, farewell!
The summer is hastening, on soft winds borne :
grape, ye may bind the corn! For me, I depart to a brighter shore : Ye are marked by care, ye are mine no more. I go where the loved, who have left you, dwell, And the flowers are not Death's :--fare ye well, farewell!