Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
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Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
 
The Forest Maid
By William Cullen Bryant (1794–1878)
 
O FAIREST of the rural maids!
Thy birth was in the forest shades;
And all the beauty of the place
Is in thy heart and on thy face.
 
The twilight of the trees and rocks        5
Is in the light shade of thy locks;
Thy step is as the wind that weaves
Its playful way among the leaves.
 
Thine eyes are springs, in whose serene
And silent waters heaven is seen;        10
Their lashes are the herbs that look
On their young figures in the brook.
 
The forest depths by foot unpress’d
Are not more sinless than thy breast;
The holy peace that fills the air        15
Of those calm solitudes is there.
 
 
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