Verse > Anthologies > Hamilton Fish Armstrong, ed. > The Book of New York Verse
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Hamilton Fish Armstrong, ed.  The Book of New York Verse.  1917.
 
Maiden Lane
By Louise Morgan Sill
 
DOWN Maiden Lane, where clover grew,
  Sweet-scented in the early air,
Where sparkling rills went shining through
  Their grassy banks, so green, so fair,
Blithe little maids from Holland land        5
  Went tripping, laughing each to each,
To bathe the flax, or spread a band
  Of linen in the sun to bleach.
 
More than two centuries ago
  They wore this path—a maiden’s lane—        10
Where now such waves of commerce flow
  As never dazed a burgher’s brain.
Two hundred years ago and more
  Those thrifty damsels, one by one,
With plump, round arms their linen bore        15
  To dry in Mana-ha-ta’s sun.
 
But now! Behold the altered view;
  No tender sward, no bubbling stream,
No laughter,—was it really true,
  Or but the fancy of a dream?        20
Were these harsh walls a byway sweet,
  This floor of stone a grassy plain?
Pray vanish, modern city street,
  And let us stroll down Maiden Lane.
 
 
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