Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, SASSAFRAS, by SAMUEL MINTURN PECK



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SASSAFRAS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Fringing cypress forests dim
Last Line: Of the cow-bells tinkling home!
Subject(s): Sassafras


FRINGING cypress forests dim
Where the owl makes weird abode,
Bending down with spicy limb
O'er the old plantation road
Through the swamp and up the hill,
Where the dappled byways run,
Round the gin-house, by the mill,
Floats its incense to the sun.
Swift to catch the voice of spring,
Soon its tasselled blooms appear;
Modest in their blossoming,
Breathing balm and waving cheer;
Rare the greeting that they send
To the fragrant wildwood blooms,
Bidding every blossom blend
In a chorus of perfumes.
On it leans the blackberry vine,
With white sprays caressingly;
Round its knees the wild peas twine,
Beckoning to the yellow bee;
Through its boughs the red-bird flits
Like a living flake of fire,
And with love-enlightened wits
Weaves his nest and tunes his lyre.
Oh, where skies are summer-kissed,
And the drowsy days are long,
'Neath the sassafras to list
To the field-hand's mellow song!
Or, more sweet than chimes that hang
In some old cathedral dome,
Catch the distant klingle-klang
Of the cow-bells tinkling home!




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