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THE FOUR-LEAVED CLOVER, by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: There knelt beneath the tulip tree
Last Line: Like the ethereal spark, from heaven!
Alternate Author Name(s): Hale, Sara; Hale, Sarah Josepha
Subject(s): Four-leaf Clovers

"There's wisdom in the grass, its teachings would we heed."

THERE knelt beneath the tulip tree
A maiden fair and young;
The flowers o'erhead bloom'd gorgeously,
As though by rainbows flung,
And all around were daisies bright,
And pansies with their eyes of light,
Like gold the sun-kiss'd crocus shone,
With beauty's smiles the earth seem'd strown,
And Love's warm incense fill'd the air,
While the fair girl was kneeling there.

In vain the flowers may woo around, --
Their charms she does not see,
For she a dearer prize has found
Beneath the tulip tree; --
A little four-leaved clover, green
As robes that grace the fairy queen,
And fresh as hopes of early youth,
When life is love, and love is truth;
-- A talisman of constant love,
This humble clover sure will prove!

And on her heart, that gentle maid
The sever'd leaves has press'd,
Which through the coming night's dark shade
Beneath her cheek will rest;
Then precious dreams of one will rise,
Like Love's own star in morning skies,
So sweetly bright, we would the day
His glowing chariot might delay; --
What tomes of pure and tender thought
Those simple leaves to her have taught!

Of old the sacred mistletoe
The Druid's altar bound;
The Roman hero's haughty brow
The fadeless laurel crown'd.
Dark superstition's sway is past,
And war's red star is waning fast,
Nor mistletoe, nor laurel hold
The mystic language breathed of old,
For nature's life no power can give,
To bid the false and selfish live.

But still the olive-leaf imparts,
As when, dove-borne, at first,
It taught heaven's lore to human hearts
Its hope, and joy, and trust;
Nor deem the faith from folly springs,
Which innocent enjoyment brings;
Better from earth root every flower,
Than crush imagination's power,
In true and loving minds, to raise
An Eden for their coming days.

As on each rock, where plants can cling,
The sunshine will be shed;
As from the tiniest star-lit spring,
The ocean's depths are fed;
Thus hopes will rise, if love's clear ray
Keep warm and bright life's rock-strewn way;
And from small, daily joys, distill'd,
The heart's deep fount of peace is fill'd; --
Oh! blest when Fancy's ray is given,
Like the ethereal spark, from heaven!

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