Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, DOVECOTT MILL: 1. THE HOMESTEAD, by PHOEBE CARY



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DOVECOTT MILL: 1. THE HOMESTEAD, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: From the old squire's dwelling, gloomy and grand
Last Line: Is growing white as the winter's rime.
Subject(s): Home


FROM the old Squire's dwelling, gloomy and grand,
Stretching away on either hand,
Lie fields of broad and fertile land.

Acres on acres everywhere
The look of smiling plenty wear,
That tells of the master's thoughtful care.

Here blossoms the clover, white and red,
Here the heavy oats in a tangle spread;
And the millet lifts her golden head.

And, ripening, closely neighbored by
Fields of barley and pale white rye,
The yellow wheat grows strong and high.

And near, untried through the summer days,
Lifting their spears in the sun's fierce blaze,
Stand the bearded ranks of the maize.

Straying over the side of the hill,
Here the sheep run to and fro at will,
Nibbling of short green grass their fill.

Sleek cows down the pasture take their ways,
Or lie in the shade through the sultry days,
Idle, and too full-fed to graze.

Ah, you might wander far and wide,
Nor find a spot in the country side,
So fair to see as our valley's pride!

How, just beyond, if it will not tire
Your feet to climb this green knoll higher,
We can see the pretty village spire;

And, mystic haunt of the whippoor-wills,
The wood, that all the background fills,
Crowning the tops to the mill-creek hills.

There, miles away, like a faint blue line,
Whenever the day is clear and fine
You can see the track of a river shine.

Near it a city hides unseen,
Shut close the verdant hills between,
As an acorn set in its cup of green.

And right beneath, at the foot of the hill,
The little creek flows swift and still,
That turns the wheel of Dovecote Mill.

Nearer the grand old house one sees
Fair rows of thrifty apple-trees,
And tall straight pears, o'ertopping these.

And down at the foot of the garden, low,
On a rustic bench, a pretty show,
White bee-hives, standing in a row.

Here trimmed in sprigs with blossoms, each
Of the little bees in easy reach,
Hang the boughs of the plum and peach.

At the garden's head are poplars, tall,
And peacocks, making their harsh loud call,
Sun themselves all day on the wall.

And here you will find on every hand
Walks, and fountains, and statues grand,
And trees from many a foreign land.

And flowers, that only the learned can name,
Here glow and burn like a gorgeous flame,
Putting the poor man's blooms to shame.

Far away from their native air
The Norway pines their green dress wear;
And larches swing their long loose hair.

Near the porch grows the broad catalpa tree
And o'er it the grand wistaria,
Born to the purple of royalty.

There looking the same for a weary while, --
'T was built in this heavy, gloomy style, --
Stands the mansion, a grand old pile.

Always closed, as it is to-day,
And the proud Squire, so the neighbors say,
Frowns each unwelcome guest away.

Though some who knew him long ago,
If you ask, will shake their heads of snow,
And tell you he was not always so,

Though grave and quiet at any time, --
But that now, his head in manhood's prime,
Is growing white as the winter's rime.





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