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BY WILLIAM HENRY BURLEIGH.
JUNE, with its roses—June !
The gladdest month of our capricious year,
With its thick foliage and its sunlight clear;
And with the drowsy tune
Of the bright leaping waters, as they pass
Laughingly on amid the springing grass !
Earth, at her joyous coming, Smiles as she puts her gayest mantle on; And Nature greets her with a benison;
While myriad voices, humming Their welcome song, breathe dreamy music round, Till seems the air an element of sound.
The overarching sky
Weareth a softer tint, a lovelier blue,
As if the light of heaven were melting through
Its sapphire home on high;
Hiding the sunshine in their vapory breast,
The clouds float on like spirits to their rest.
A deeper melody,
Poured by the birds, as o'er their callow young
Watchful they hover, to the breeze is flung,
Gladsome, yet not of glee-
Music heart-born, like that which mothers sing
Above their cradled infants slumbering.
On the warm hill-side, where
The sunlight lingers latest, through the grass
Peepeth the luscious strawberry! As they pass,
Young children gambol there,
Crushing the gathered fruit in playful mood,
And staining their bright faces with its blood.
A deeper blush is given
To the half-ripened cherry, as the sun
Day after day pours warmth the trees upon,
Till the rich pulp is riven;
The truant school-boy looks with longing eyes.
And perils limb and neck to win the prize.
The farmer, in his field, Draws the rich mould around the tender maize; While Hope, bright-pinioned, points to coming days,
When all his toil shall yield
An ample harvest, and around his hearth
There shall be laughing eyes and tones of mirth.
Poised on his rainbow wing,
The butterfly, whose life is but an hour,
Hovers coquettishly from flower to flower,
A gay and happy thing;
Born for the sunshine and the summer day,
Soon passing, like the beautiful, away!
These are thy pictures, June !
Brightest of summer months—thou month of flowers!
First-born of Beauty, whose swift-footed hours
Dance to the merry tune
Of birds, and waters, and the pleasant shout
Of Childhood on the sunny hills pealed out.
I feel it were not wrong
To deem thou art a type of Heaven's clime,
Only that there the clouds and storms of Time
Sweep not the sky along;
The flowers-air-beauty-music—all are thine,
But brighter-purer-lovelier--more divine !
BY JONATHAN LAWRENCE, JR.
COME, gentle May!
Come with thy robe of flowers,
Come with thy sun and sky, thy clouds and showers,
Come, and bring forth unto the eye of day,
From their imprisoning and mysterious night,
The buds of many hues, the children of thy light.
Come, wondrous May!
For at the bidding of thy magic wand,
Quick from the caverns of the breathing land,
In all their green and glorious array
They spring, as spring the Persian maids to hail
Thy flushing footsteps in Cashmerian vale.
Come, vocal May !
Come with thy train, that high
On some fresh branch pour out their melody,
Or carolling thy praise, the live-long day,
Sit perched in some lone glen, on echo calling,
Mid murmuring woods, and musical waters falling.
Come, sunny May!
Come with thy laughing beam,
What time the lazy mist melts on the stream,
Or seeks the mountain-top to meet thy ray,
Ere yet the dew-drop on thine own soft flower,
Hath lost its light or died beneath his power.
Come, holy May!
When sunk behind the cold and western hill,
His light hath ceased to play on leaf and rill,
And twilight's footsteps hasten his decay;
Come with thy musings, and my heart shall be
Like a pure temple consecrate to thee.
Come, beautiful May !
Like youth and loveliness
Like her I love; oh, come in thy full dress,
The drapery of dark winter cast away;
To the bright eye, and the glad heart appear,
Queen of the spring and mistress of the year!
Yet, lovely May!
Teach her whose eye shall rest upon this rhyme
To spurn the gilded mockeries of time,
The heartless pomp that beckons to betray,
And keep as thou wilt find that heart each year,
Pure as thy dawn, and as thy sunset clear.