HAIL thee, royal month of roses!

Every folded bud uncloses,

Quickened by a swift desire for the light

Minstrel zephyrs haste to woo them,

Housewife bees for honey sue them,

And the gentle dews renew them every night.

Then the breath of new-mown grasses,

Greeting every one that passes

By the dusty country road or trodden lane;

And the happy whistling rustic,

Clad in dingy blue and fustic,

Riding, like a charioteer, his lofty wain.

Suddenly the dark clouds lower;

Falls the cooling, cleansing shower,

With a burst of sunshine through it ere 't is done;

How the bended bushes glisten,

How the quails call out and listen,

And the barefoot boys go wading one by one.

Comes the south wind as a vandal,

Scattering scent like wood, of sandal

Where the lilacs cast their tiny trumpets down;

All the berry vines are fruited,

Luscious clusters, scarlet suited,

Peeping out from leafy tents of green and brown.


Wild pinks flame along the fences,

Fair enough to turn the senses

Of the staid Arachne, weaving all the day;

In the forest's dim recesses

Lady ferns shake out their tresses

And the snowy bell-shaped lilies light the way.

Then the streams that cleave the meadows,

Sheeny silver, flecked with shadows,

Honeysuckles, red and yellow, at the brink;

Farther on, tall willows leaning,

Linking hands, as 't were their meaning

Thus to shade the water where the cattle drink.

Revel, Earth, in thy completeness!

Drink, O Soul, thy fill of sweetness!

For the things we prize the dearest die too soon.

Round and round the world keeps turning,

Sunrise blushing, sunset burning;

Thirty precious, perfect days are all of June.




Elliot C. True, in Independent.