HOW dreary would all earth's inhabitants roam,

If God had not given the instinct for home 

To every creature, of every grade, 

His wisdom has fashioned, his goodness has made.

Man buildeth a palace, or buildeth a cot, 

Where others may share with him life's varied lot. 

Wild beasts of the forest have lairs for their rest, 

While birds of the wild-wood, each buildeth a nest.

So, sheltered, the young learn some lessons of life, 

So, guarded, the aged may rest from the strife, 

The helpless be aided, the famishing fed, 

The mourning be pitied, the wandering led.

Thus the instinct appears in each shelterless thing, 

To creep close to its fellow, to hover, and cling, 

To live out the impulse the Father hath given, 

Of making the earth-home a foretaste of Heaven. 

 The Myrtle.