Janet Hamilton

1795-1873 / Scotland

Sweet May Morn

'Tis sweet May morn; wake, drowsy girls!
Come ere the sun has stolen the pearls-
The dewy pearls-that glisten sheen
On May's soft lap, and mantle green.
Come bare-foot, come, each little lass
With crystal dew 'mong flowery grass
Bathe hands and feet, till all aglow,
And gaily o'er your shoulders throw
The shining drops, with dew-filled palm,
Lave cheek and brow, 'tis Beauty's balm.
Hail, sweet May morn! from tree and bush
The piping blackbird, singing thrush,
The lark, whose joyous carol loud
Rings from the dewy vernal cloud;
The cooing dove, the cawing rook,
The skimmers of the lake and brook,
Spring's sweetest voice-her own cuckoo-
A tuneful homage, loving true,
Are tendering at thy flowery throne,
In many a sweetly varied tone.
See, girls! the day advances, come
Light tripping o'er the daisies home,
Already is the cottage board
With creamy bowls of May-milk stored;
Rich foaming jugs-but not of ale-
Warm, fragrant, from the milk-maid's pail,
From hand to hand are circling round,
With health, and sweets delicious crowned;
Sweet simple joys, sweet balmy draught,
With health, and peace, and temperance fraught.
Dear little maids! your self-styled bard
Would deem it dear and rich reward,
If, when in blushing maidhood's hour,
And armed with love and beauty's power,
That love, that power, you'd bring to bear
On each fond youth who loves you dear;
And when he breathes the fond desire
To call you his, you would require
The temperance pledge, with that of love-
His love, his truth, and worth to prove,
And gain, for all you have resigned,
A happy home-a husband kind!
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