ON the bank of a rippling, silvery stream, 

Sat a happy child one day, 

With her apron filled with fragrant flowers

While she warbled a merry lay. 

And now and then on the streamlet's breast, 

Her treasures sweet were cast, 

While she laughed in glee as they danced along, 

And then went floating past. 

Again, again is her reckless sport, 

Till all are on the stream; 

Then with a cry of wild distress, 

She wakes from her thoughtless dream. 

"My flowers, my flowers, bring back my flowers, 

Oh, cruel waters, stay! 

My flowers, my flowers, you have them all, 

Oh, bear them not away." 

But the stream danced on with its precious freight, 

And tauntingly echoed back, 

"My flowers! My flowers! Bring back my flowers.” 

As it sped on its onward track. 

The hours of youth, more precious far 

Than the maiden's flowerets gay, 

How oft to snatch some fancied joy, 

Are as recklessly thrown away. 

Then when all gone, the soul awakes, 

And bitter is the cry, 

"My flowers! My flowers! Bring back my flowers! 

My flowers that prostrate lie."