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THE LILY OF THE VALLEY, by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: Where the hare-bells are ringing
Last Line: Sign the warrant for its death.
Subject(s): Birds; Death; Lilies Of The Valley; Dead, The

WHERE the hare-bells are ringing
Their peal of sunny flowers,
And a bird of merry soul
Sings away the birthday hours
Of the valley-lily low,
Opening, dewily and slow,
Petals, dear to young and fair
For the prophecy they bear
Of the coming roses—
The free bold bird of merry soul
Amidst his leaves cannot control
His triumphant love of spring.

Thou bird of joyous soul,
Why can'st thou not control
Thy triumphant love of spring?
I know that thou dost rally
Thy spirit proud to sing,
Because to-day is born
The lily of the valley.
Oh! rather should'st thou mourn;
For that flower so meek and low,
Born with its own death-bell,
Only cometh to foretell
Unpitying winter's doom,
Who in scorn doth lay it low
In the tomb.

Vain is all its prayer,
It may flatter, as it will,
The ungentle hours
With its ring of toying flowers;
Unrelenting they must kill
With their scornful breath,
For the very petals fair,
Which the destined flower uncloses
In its innocence,
To plead for its defence,
By the prophecy they bear
Of the coming roses,
Sign the warrant for its death.

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