With these I must Acknowledge family ties. Our mother, the dust, With wistful and investigating eyes Searches my soul for the old sturdiness, Valor, simplicity! Stout virtues these, We learned at her dear knees. Friend, you and I Once played together in the good old days. Do you remember? Why, brother, down what wild ways We traveled, when— That's right! Draw close to me! Come now, let's tell the tale beneath the old roof-tree. We had a fine party last night on the lawn; All the trees and the flowers were invited.
It never broke up till the first peep of dawn. And the guests went away quite delighted. The Maple and Pine gave this banquet so fine. Spread out in the moonlight before us; The music was planned by the Whippoorwill band, With a cricket and katydid chorus. The jolliest set in the garden had met— Not a scoffer was there, nor a mourner, Except a rude thorn, whom they treated with scorn, As he grumbled away in his corner. The loveliest creatures wore emerald green, With dewdrops for jewels, resplendent; But the stately Rose Queen, all in scarlet was seen, And in purple her Lilac attendant.
Now, the Oak is a hundred years old, as they tell, And very exalted his station; And so, on this midsummer night, it befell That they gave him a royal ovation. With a dignified grace he arose in his place And thanked all his neighbors politely, Described the rough ways of his pioneer days And the hardships recalled now so lightly. Then all the night long there was laughter and song, In a language the trees comprehended, Until daylight fell strong on the mirth-making throng And the famous tree party was ended.
Huge elm, with rifted trunk all notched and scarred, Like to a warrior's destiny! I love To stretch me often on thy shadowed sward, And hear the laugh of summer leaves above; Or on thy buttressed roots to sit, and lean In careless attitude, and there reflect On times and deeds and darings that have been — Old castaways, now swallowed in neglect, — While thou art towering in thy strength of heart, Stirring the soul to vain imaginings In which life's sordid being hath no part.
The wind of that eternal ditty sings, Humming of future things, that burn the mind To leave some fragment of itself behind. The poets have made Autumn sorrowful; I find her joyous, radiant, serene. Her pomp is hung in a deep azure sky That turns about the world by day and night, Nor loses its bright charm. And when the trees resign their foliage, Loosing their leaves upon the cradling air As liberally as if they ne'er had owned them,— They show the richer for the nakedness That weds them with the clarity of heav'n.
Woodman, spare that tree! Touch not a single bough! In youth it sheltered me, And I'll protect it now.
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That old familiar tree, Whose glory and renown Are spread o'er land and sea, And wouldst thou hew it down? Woodman, forbear thy stroke! Cut not its earth-bound ties; O, spare that aged oak, Now towering to the skies! When but an idle boy I sought its grateful shade; In all their gushing joy Here too my sisters played. My mother kissed me here; My father pressed my hand -- Forgive this foolish tear, But let that old oak stand!
My heart-strings round thee cling, Close as thy bark, old friend! Here shall the wild-bird sing, And still thy branches bend. Old tree! And, woodman, leave the spot; While I've a hand to save, Thy axe shall hurt it not. I love thee when thy swelling buds appear And one by one their tender leaves unfold, As if they knew that warmer suns were near, Nor longer sought to hide from winter's cold; And when with darker growth thy leaves are seen To veil from view the early robin's nest, I love to lie beneath thy waving skreen With limbs by summer's heat and toil opprest; And when the autumn winds have stript thee bare, And round thee lies the smooth untrodden snow, When nought is thine that made thee once so fair, I love to watch thy shadowy form below, And through thy leafless arms to look above On stars that brighter beam when most we need their love.
Seeds Quotes ( quotes)
So they got a bit acquainted on a glowing summer day, And they found they liked each other which is often times the way ; And the river got so friendly, and it ran so very slow, That the birch-tree shone reflected in the water down below! I often pass a gracious tree Whose name I can't identify, But still I bow, in courtesy It waves a bough, in kind reply. I do not know your name, O tree Are you a hemlock or a pine? But why should that embarrass me? Quite probably you don't know mine. The chestnut trees turned yellow, The oak like sherry browned, The fir, the stubborn fellow, Stayed green the whole year round.
But O the bonny maple How richly he does shine! He glows against the sunset Like ruddy old port wine. All of your mates within the wood Are in the crimson leaf, They had their swift, enamored spring, Their summertime too brief. But you—what chance befell that you Were cheated of the Spring, That now you cling so fast to leaves Wherein no bird will sing? The Tree's early leaf-buds were bursting their brown; "Shall I take them away?
The Tree bore his blossoms, and all the birds sung; "Shall I take them away? The Tree bore his fruit in the midsummer glow; Said the girl, "May I gather thy berries now? You carve dear names upon the faithful rind, Nor in that vernal stem the cross foreknow That Age shall bear, silent, yet unresigned! Oh, tenderly deepen the woodland glooms, And merrily sway the beeches; Breathe delicately the willow blooms, And the pines rehearse new speeches; The elms toss high till they reach the sky, Pale catkins the yellow birch launches, But the tree I love all the greenwood above Is the maple of sunny branches.
Let who will sing of the hawthorn in spring, Or the late-leaved linden in summer; There's a word may be for the locust-tree, That delicate, strange new-comer; But the maple it glows with the tint of the rose When pale are the spring-time regions, And its towers of flame from afar proclaim The advance of Winter's legions. And a greener shade there never was made Than its summer canopy sifted, And many a day as beneath it I lay Has my memory backward drifted To a pleasant lane I may walk not again, Leading over a fresh, green hill, Where a maple stood just clear of the wood— And oh!
All hail to the broad-leaved Maple! With her fair and changeful dress— A type of our youthful country In its pride and loveliness; Whether in Spring or Summer, Or in the dreary Fall, 'Mid Nature's forest children, She's fairest of them all. Down sunny slopes and valleys Her graceful form is seen, Her wide, umbrageous branches The sunburnt reaper screen; 'Mid the dark-browed firs and cedars Her livelier colours shine, Like the dawn of the brighter future On the settler's hut of pine.
She crowns the pleasant hilltop, Whispers on breezy downs, And casts refreshing shadows O'er the streets of our busy towns; She gladdens the aching eyeball, Shelters the weary head, And scatters her crimson glories On the graves of the silent dead. When winter's frosts are yielding To the sun's returning sway, And merry groups are speeding To sugar-woods away; The sweet and welling juices, Which form their welcome spoil, Tell of the teeming plenty, Which here waits honest toil.
When sweet-toned Spring, soft-breathing, Breaks Nature's icy sleep, And the forest boughs are swaying Like the green waves of the deep; In her fair and budding beauty, A fitting emblem, she, Of this our land of promise, Of hope, of liberty. And when her leaves, all crimson, Droop silently and fall, Like drops of life-blood welling From a warrior brave and tall; They tell how fast and freely Would her children's blood be shed, Ere the soil of our faith and freedom Should echo a foeman's tread.
Then hail to the broad-leaved Maple! I do remember me Of two old elm-trees' shade, With mosses sprinkled at their feet, Where my young childhood play'd; While the rocks above their head Frown'd out so stern and gray, And the little crystal streamlet near Went leaping on its way. There, side by side, they flourish'd, With intertwining crown, And through their broad embracing arms The prying moon look'd down; And I deem'd as, there I linger'd— A musing child, alone— She sought my secret heart to scan From her far silver throne.
I do remember me Of all their wealth of leaves, When summer, in her radiant loom, The burning solstice weaves; And how, with firm endurance, They braved an adverse sky, Like Belisarius, doom'd to meet His country's wintry eye. I've roam'd through varied regions, Where stranger-streamlets run, And where the proud magnolia flaunts Beneath a southern sun, And where the sparse and stinted pine Puts forth its sombre form, A vassal to the arctic cloud, And to the tyrant storm,.
And where the pure unruffled lakes In placid wavelets roll, Or where sublime Niagara shakes The wonder-stricken soul, I've seen the temple's sculptured pile, The pencil's glorious art, Yet still those old green trees I wore Depictured on my heart. Years fled; my native vale I sought, Where those tall elm-trees wave; But many a column of its trust Lay broken in the grave. The ancient and the white-hair'd men. I sought the thrifty matron, Whose busy wheel was heard When the early beams of morning Awoke the chirping bird; Strange faces from her window look'd, Strange voices fill'd her cot, And, 'neath the very vine she train'd, Her memory was forgot.
I left a youthful mother, Her children round her knee, Those babes had risen into men, And coldly look'd on me; But she, with all her bloom and grace, Did in the churchyard lie, While still those changeless elms upbore Their kingly canopy.
Though we, who 'neath their lofty screen Pursued our childish play, May show amid our sunny locks Some lurking tints of gray, And though the village of our love Doth many a change betide, Still do those sacred elm-trees stand, In all their strength and pride. You saw how its roots had grasped the ground As if it had felt that the earth went round, And fastened them down with determined will To keep it steady, and hold it still. Its aged trunk, so stately and strong Has braved the blasts as they're rushed along, Its head has towered, and its arms have spread, While more than a hundred years have fled!
Well, that old elm, that is now so grand, Was once a twig in the rustic hand Of a youthful peasant, who went one night To visit his love, by the tender light Of the modest moon and her twinkling host, While the star that lighted his bosom most, And gave to his lonely feet their speed, Abode in a cottage beyond the mead!
The mother had silenced her humming wheel; The father returned for the evening meal, The thanks of one who had chosen the part Of the poor in spirit, the rich in heart, Who, having the soul's grand panacea, Feel all is added that's needful here; And know this truth of the human breast, That, wanting little, is being blest. The good old man in his chair reclined, At a humble door, with a peaceful mind, While the drops from his sun-burnt brow were dried By the cool, sweet air of the eventide. The son from the yoke had unlocked the bow, Dismissing the faithful ox to go And graze in the close.
He had called the kine For their oblation at day's decline. He'd gathered and numbered the lambs and sheep, And fastened them up in their nightly keep. He'd stood by the coop till the hen could bring Her huddling brood safe under her wing; And made them secure from the hooting owl, Whose midnight prey was the shrieking fowl. When all was finished, he sped to the well Where the old gray bucket hastily fell, And the clear cold water came up to chase The dust of the field from his neck and face, And hands and feet, till the youth began To look renewed in the outer man; And soon arrayed in his Sunday's best, The stiff new suit had done the rest; And the hale, young lover was on his way, Where, through the fen and the field it lay; And over the bramble, the brake and the grass, As the shortest cut to the house of his lass.
It is not recorded how long he staid In the cheerful home of the smiling maid; But when he came out, it was late and dark, And silent—not even a dog would bark, To take from his feeling of loneliness, And make the length of his way seem less. He thought it was strange, that the treacherous moon Should have given the world the slip so soon; And, whether the eyes of the girl had made The stars of the sky in his own to fade, Or not, it certainly seemed to him, That each grew distant, and small, and dim; And he shuddered to think he now was about To take a long and a lonely route; For he did not know what fearful sight Might come to him through the shadows of night!
An Elm grew close by the cottage's eaves; So, he plucked him a twig well clothed with leaves, And sallying forth with the supple arm, To serve as a talisman parrying harm, He felt that, though his heart was so big, 'T was even the stouter for having the twig. For this, he thought, would answer to switch The horrors away, as he crossed the ditch, The meadow and copse, wherein, perchance, Will-o'-the-wisp might wickedly dance; And wielding it keep him from having a chill At the menacing sound of 'Whip-poor-will! When he got safe home, and joyfully found He still was himself!
He planted the twig by his family cot, To stand as a monument marking the spot It helped him to reach: and, what was still more, Because it had grown by his fair one's door. The twig took root; and as time flew by, Its boughs spread wide, and its head grew high; While the priest's good service had long been done, Which made the youth and the maiden one; And their young scions arose and played Around the tree, in its leafy shade. But many and many a year has fled Since they were gathered among the dead. And now their names with the moss o'ergrown, Are veiled from sight on the church-yard stone, That leans away, in a lingering fall, And owns the power that shall level all The works that the hand of man hath wrought, Bring him to dust, and his name to nought.
Rippling through thy branches goes the sunshine, Among thy leaves that palpitate forever; Ovid in thee a pining Nymph had prisoned, The soul once of some tremulous inland river, Quivering to tell her woe, but, ah! While all the forest, witched with slumberous moonshine, Holds up its leaves in happy, happy silence, Waiting the dew, with breath and pulse suspended,— I hear afar thy whispering, gleamy islands, And track thee wakeful still amid the wide-hung silence.
Upon the brink of some wood-nestled lakelet, Thy foliage, like the tresses of a Dryad, Dripping about thy slim white stem, whose shadow Slopes quivering down the water's dusky quiet, Thou shrink'st as on her bath's edge would some startled Dryad. Thou art the go-between of rustic lovers; Thy white bark has their secrets in its keeping; Reuben writes here the happy name of Patience, And thy lithe boughs hang murmuring and weeping Above her, as she steals the mystery from thy keeping.
Thou art to me like my beloved maiden, So frankly coy, so full of trembly confidences; Thy shadow scarce seems shade, thy pattering leaflets Sprinkle their gathered sunshine o'er my senses, And Nature gives me all her summer confidences. Whether my heart with hope or sorrow tremble, Thou sympathizest still; wild and unquiet, I fling me down; thy ripple, like a river, Flows valleyward, where calmness is, and by it My heart is floated down into the land of quiet. Ice-storms do that.
Often you must have seen them Loaded with ice a sunny winter morning After a rain.
A Poem About The Cycle Of Life
They click upon themselves As the breeze rises, and turn many-colored As the stir cracks and crazes their enamel. They are dragged to the withered bracken by the load, And they seem not to break; though once they are bowed So low for long, they never right themselves: You may see their trunks arching in the woods Years afterwards, trailing their leaves on the ground Like girls on hands and knees that throw their hair Before them over their heads to dry in the sun.
But I was going to say when Truth broke in With all her matter-of-fact about the ice-storm Now am I free to be poetical? I should prefer to have some boy bend them As he went out and in to fetch the cows— Some boy too far from town to learn baseball, Whose only play was what he found himself, Summer or winter, and could play alone. He learned all there was To learn about not launching out too soon And so not carrying the tree away Clear to the ground.
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He always kept his poise To the top branches, climbing carefully With the same pains you use to fill a cup Up to the brim, and even above the brim. Then he flung outward, feet first, with a swish, Kicking his way down through the air to the ground. So was I once myself a swinger of birches. And so I dream of going back to be. May no fate willfully misunderstand me And half grant what I wish and snatch me away Not to return. That would be good both going and coming back. One could do worse than be a swinger of birches. The clear wind swings a fairy flail Till all the tiptoe birches quail.
The west is dreaming of the Grail. God knows I have no heart to sing! I wish I had forgotten how, For what do poems matter now, Music or love or anything? Yet I must shape my patient rhymes For terror of a grievous place, And blind my eyes with words sometimes, For fear of hunger on his face, Or pain when I can give no aid, Or silence where I may not come: As though a song could save me from The thought of all my world unmade!
The birches hold their laces frail Against the sunlight up the Trail And show me heaven through a veil. Swinging on a birch-tree To a sleepy tune, Hummed by all the breezes In the month of June! Little leaves a-flutter Sound like dancing drops Of a Brook on pebbles,— Song that never stops. Up and down we seesaw: Up into the sky; How it opens on us, Like a wide blue eye!
You and I are sailors Rocking on a mast; And the world's our vessel: Ho! I thought, Who is that man? I didn't know you. And I crept down the stairs and up the stairs To look again, and still your spade kept lifting. Then you came in. I heard your rumbling voice Out in the kitchen, and I don't know why, But I went near to see with my own eyes.
You could sit there with the stains on your shoes Of the fresh earth from your own baby's grave And talk about your everyday concerns. You had stood the spade up against the wall Outside there in the entry, for I saw it. I'm cursed. God, if I don't believe I'm cursed. What had how long it takes a birch to rot To do with what was in the darkened parlor.
You couldn't care! The nearest friends can go With anyone to death, comes so far short They might as well not try to go at all. No, from the time when one is sick to death, One is alone, and he dies more alone. Friends make pretense of following to the grave, But before one is in it, their minds are turned And making the best of their way back to life And living people, and things they understand.
Seeds and Cuttings
But the world's evil. I won't have grief so If I can change it. Oh, I won't, I won't! You won't go now. You're crying. Close the door. The heart's gone out of it: why keep it up. There's someone coming down the road! I must go-- Somewhere out of this house. How can I make you--' 'If--you--do! First tell me that. I'll follow and bring you back by force. I will! Robert Frost To Earthward Love at the lips was touch As sweet as I could bear; And once that seemed too much; I lived on air That crossed me from sweet things, The flow of—was it musk From hidden grapevine springs Downhill at dusk?
I had the swirl and ache From sprays of honeysuckle That when they're gathered shake Dew on the knuckle. I craved strong sweets, but those Seemed strong when I was young; The petal of the rose It was that stung. Now no joy but lacks salt, That is not dashed with pain And weariness and fault; I crave the stain Of tears, the aftermark Of almost too much love, The sweet of bitter bark And burning clove.
When stiff and sore and scarred I take away my hand From leaning on it hard In grass and sand, The hurt is not enough: I long for weight and strength To feel the earth as rough To all my length. Christmas Trees A Christmas circular letter The city had withdrawn into itself And left at last the country to the country; When between whirls of snow not come to lie And whirls of foliage not yet laid, there drove A stranger to our yard, who looked the city, Yet did in country fashion in that there He sat and waited till he drew us out, A-buttoning coats, to ask him who he was.
He proved to be the city come again To look for something it had left behind And could not do without and keep its Christmas. He asked if I would sell my Christmas trees; My woods—the young fir balsams like a place Where houses all are churches and have spires. I hadn't thought of them as Christmas trees. I doubt if I was tempted for a moment To sell them off their feet to go in cars And leave the slope behind the house all bare, Where the sun shines now no warmer than the moon.
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I'd hate to have them know it if I was. Yet more I'd hate to hold my trees, except As others hold theirs or refuse for them, Beyond the time of profitable growth— The trial by market everything must come to. You can't have the tree without the plant. You can't have the plant without the seed. I can't be a father without being a man. I, the man, can't be a father without my boys. The cycle of life. The man, the boys, the father. The seed, the plant, the tree. Did you spell check your submission? Common Mistakes: the word "i" should be capitalized, "u" is not a word, and "im" is spelled "I'm" or "I am".
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