Janet Hamilton

1795-1873 / Scotland

A Memory: Banks Of Calder And Cousin Dora

Straying, musing, singing, dreaming,
'Neath the leafy banners streaming,
Fleck'd with golden sunbeams gleaming
Through the woodland's dun;
On lone Calder's banks reclining,
Where the brier and hazel, twining,
Screeen me from the fervid shining
Of the noontide sun.
Sweet thy soft melodious gushing,
Sylvan stream! and sweet the hushing
Of the breeze, with soft breath pushing
Wide the opening flowers;
Pendant honeysuckles flinging
Fragrance round; the woodbine clinging
Round the elm; bird-music ringing
In thy birchen bowers.
Through thy waters-rippling, dancing,
Where the minnow shoals are glancing-
Slow I wade, and, still advancing,
Reach the farther shore;
Lightly bounding o'er the shingles,
Through my limbs the warm blood tingles;
With the birds my wild song mingles,
Trilling o'er and o'er.
Up the dell, all panting, glowing,
Where the foxgloves tall are growing,
Where the wild brier-roses, blowing,
Scent the summer air;
Where the weeping willow stoopeth,
Where the silver runnel scoopeth
Out her bed; where hyacinth droopeth,
Slender, meek, and fair.
Where the silver birch is waving,
Where the crystal well-spring laving,
Busy bees their treasures saving,
Stands a lonely cot,
Bower'd in jessamine and roses;
Flora there her wealth discloses,
Freely there her charms exposes,
On that lovely spot.
From the flower-wreathed porch comes winging,
Like a bird, dear Dora, singing,
To my side so fondly clinging-
Ah, how soon to part!
Fair, pale rose! too early blowing!
Child of beauty, bright and glowing!
Sweetest thoughts and fancies flowing
Ever from her heart.
Summers six, with shade and shining,
Passed, when, without plaint or pining,
On her couch of death reclining,
Cousin Dora lay.
Short we had her in possession,
Yet she has fulfill'd her mission;
Called to Heaven, we bow submission-
She has passed away!
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