Verse > John Greenleaf Whittier > The Poetical Works in Four Volumes
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John Greenleaf Whittier (1807–1892).  The Poetical Works in Four Volumes.  1892.
 
Poems of Nature
The Trailing Arbutus
 
I WANDERED lonely where the pine-trees made
Against the bitter East their barricade,
  And, guided by its sweet
Perfume, I found, within a narrow dell,
The trailing spring flower tinted like a shell        5
  Amid dry leaves and mosses at my feet.
 
From under dead boughs, for whose loss the pines
Moaned ceaseless overhead, the blossoming vines
  Lifted their glad surprise,
While yet the bluebird smoothed in leafless trees        10
His feathers ruffled by the chill sea-breeze,
  And snow-drifts lingered under April skies.
 
As, pausing, o’er the lonely flower I bent,
I thought of lives thus lowly, clogged and pent,
  Which yet find room,        15
Through care and cumber, coldness and decay,
To lend a sweetness to the ungenial day
  And make the sad earth happier for their bloom.

  1879.
 
 
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