BLUE JAY up in the maple tree,

Shaking your throat with such bursts of glee,

How did you happen to be so blue?

Did you steal a bit of the lake for your crest,

And fasten blue violets into your vest?

Tell me, I pray you,—tell me true!

Did you dip your wings in azure dye,

'When April began to paint the sky,

That was pale with the winter's stay?

Or were you hatched from a bluebell bright,

'Neath the warm, gold breast of a sunbeam light,

By the river one blue spring day?

O Blue Jay up in the maple tree,

A-tossing your saucy head at me,

With ne'er a word for my questioning,

Pray, cease for a moment your "ting-a-link,"

And hear when I tell you what I think,—

You bonniest bit of the spring.

I think when the (God) made the flowers,

To grow in these merry fields of ours,

Periwinkles and violets rare,

There was left of the spring's own color, blue,

Plenty to fashion a flower whose hue

Would be richer than all, and as fair.

So putting their wits together, they

Made one great blossom, so bright and gay

The lily beside it seemed blurred,

And then they said: "We will toss it in air;

So many blue blossoms grow everywhere,

Let this pretty one be a bird!"




Susan Hartley Swett.