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- Types of Children's Literature - 20/107 -


Then doth thy sweet and quiet eye Look through its fringes to the sky, Blue--blue--as if that sky let fall A flower from its cerulean wall.

I would that thus, when I shall see The hour of death draw near to me, Hope, blossoming within my heart, May look to heaven as I depart.

THE EAGLE

Alfred Tennyson

He clasps the crag with crooked hands; Close to the sun in lonely lands, Ringed with the azure world, he stands.

The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls; He watches from his mountain walls, And like a thunderbolt he falls.

ON THE GRASSHOPPER AND CRICKET

John Keats

The poetry of earth is never dead: When all the birds are faint with the hot sun, And hide in cooling trees, a voice will run From hedge to hedge about the new-mown mead; That is the grasshopper's--he takes the lead In summer luxury,--he has never done With his delights; for, when tired out with fun, He rests at ease beneath some pleasant weed. The poetry of earth is ceasing never. On a lone winter evening, when the frost Has wrought a silence, from the stove there shrills The cricket's song, in warmth increasing ever, And seems to one, in drowsiness half lost, The grasshopper's among some grassy hills.

LESSONS FROM NATURE

TO A WATERFOWL

William Cullen Bryant

Whither, midst falling dew, While glow the heavens with the last steps of days, Far, through their rosy depths, dost thou pursue Thy solitary way?

Vainly the fowler's eye Might mark thy distant flight to do thee wrong, As, darkly seen against the crimson sky, Thy figure floats along.

Seek'st thou the plashy brink Of weedy lake or marge of river wide, Or where the rocking billows rise and sink On the chafed ocean-side?

There is a Power whose care Teaches thy way along that pathless coast,-- The desert and illimitable air,-- Lone wandering, but not lost.

All day thy wings have fanned, At that far height, the cold, thin atmosphere, Yet stoop not, weary, to the welcome land, Though the dark night is near.

And soon that toil shall end; Soon shalt thou find a summer home, and rest, And scream among thy fellows; reeds shall bend, Soon, o'er thy sheltered nest.

Thou'rt gone! the abyss of heaven Hath swallowed up thy form; yet, on my heart Deeply has sunk the lesson thou hast given, And shall not soon depart.

He who, from zone to zone, Guides through the boundless sky thy certain flight, In the long way that I must tread alone, Will lead my steps aright.

THE CHAMBERED NAUTILUS

Oliver Wendell Holmes

This is the ship of pearl, which, poets feign, Sails the unshadowed main,-- The venturous bark that flings On the sweet summer wind its purpled wings In gulfs enchanted, where the Siren sings, And coral reefs lie bare, Where the cold sea maids rise to sun their streaming hair.

Its webs of living gauze no more unfurl; Wrecked is the ship of pearl! And every chambered cell, Where its dim dreaming life was wont to dwell, As the frail tenant shaped his growing shell, Before thee lies revealed,-- Its irised ceiling rent, its sunless crypt unsealed!

Year after year beheld the silent toil That spread his lustrous coil; Still, as the spiral grew, He left the past year's dwelling for the new, Stole with soft step its shining archway through, Built up its idle door, Stretched in his last-found home, and knew the old no more.

Thanks for the heavenly message brought by thee, Child of the wandering sea, Cast from her lap, forlorn! From thy dead lips a clearer note is born Than ever Triton blew from wreathèd horn! While on mine ear it rings, Through the deep caves of thought I hear a voice that sings:--

Build thee more stately mansions, O my soul, As the swift seasons roll! Leave thy low-vaulted past! Let each new temple, nobler than the last, Shut thee from heaven with a dome more vast, Till thou at length art free, Leaving thine outgrown shell by life's unresting sea!

THE BUGLE SONG

Alfred Tennyson

The splendor falls on castle walls And snowy summits old in story; The long light shakes across the lakes, And the wild cataract leaps in glory. Blow, bugle, blow, set the wild echoes flying, Blow, bugle; answer, echoes, dying, dying, dying.

O, hark, O, hear! how thin and clear, And thinner, clearer, farther going! O, sweet and far from cliff and scar The horns of Elfland faintly blowing! Blow, let us hear the purple glens replying: Blow, bugle; answer, echoes, dying, dying, dying.

O love, they die in yon rich sky, They faint on hill or field or river; Our echoes roll from soul to soul, And grow forever and forever. Blow, bugle, blow, set the wild echoes flying, And answer, echoes, answer, dying, dying, dying.

SONGS OF LIFE

THE NOBLE NATURE

Ben Jonson

It is not growing like a tree In bulk, doth make men better be, Or standing long an oak, three hundred year, To fall a log at last, dry, bald, and sere: A lily of a day, Is fairer far, in May, Although it fall and die that night; It was the plant and flower of light. In small proportions we just beauty see; And in short measures, life may perfect be.

THE CHARACTER OF A HAPPY LIFE


Types of Children's Literature - 20/107

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