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THE VINE SONG, FR. THE MINSTREL'S APPOINTMENT, by                     Poet's Biography
First Line: The grape is the only fruit of the skies
Last Line: Shall charm its rest with echo and light.
Subject(s): Vines & Vineyards

THE grape is the only fruit of the skies:
'Tis suckled with dew in the springtime bright;
Then, lapped in leaves, awhile it lies,
To learn their songs in the evening light.
Crimson sunsets lend it a hue --
Airs of summer, being and breath;
Under the heaven's palace of blue
None that drink of it dream of death.
In each grape there dwells a sprite,
Born of fancy, pleasure, and light;
Every bubble that sparks the bowl
Holds in its dome a starry soul.
Then would you think
Like a spirit, drink --
Drink, drink of the joyous wine,
Up to the brain,
Again and again,
Those wits of the stars shall mount and shine.

Lovers, shed your happiest smiles
Under the vine where'er you go.
The tendrils shoot like passion's wiles,
The blushes under their shadows glow.
Friends, who around the bright hearth sing,
Pray by the vine where'er you roam,
That friendship, like his arms, may cling
For ever around the walls of home.

Poets, looking through fancy's glass
Round the world for beauty and light,
Wheresoever the day you pass,
Under some old vine rest at night.
Every bough shall guard their guest,
And bend to his lip their rosiest wine;
And every leaf that lulls to rest
Shall fill your spirits with dreams divine.

Oh! when this heart has ceased to blow,
Oh! when its love has failed to burn,
Scatter it still in its wit-bright glow
Into some cup's funereal urn:
Songs and smiles that charmed and shone
Over its bright brim many a night,
Murmuring yet of pleasures gone,
Shall charm its rest with echo and light.

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