Alice Cary

(1820-1871 / USA)

Among The Beautiful Pictures


Among the beautiful pictures
That hang on Memory's wall,
Is one of a dim old forest,
That seemeth best of all;
Not for its gnarled oaks olden,
Dark with the mistletoe:
Not for the violets golden
That sprinkle the vale below;
Not for the milk-white lilies.
That lean from the fragrant ledge,
Coquetting all day with the sunbeams,
And stealing their golden edge;
Not for the vines on the upland,
Where the bright red berries rest,
Nor the pinks, nor the pale sweet cowslip,
It seemeth to me the best,

I once had a little brother
With eyes that were dark and deep;
In the lap of that dim old forest
He lieth it in peace asleep;
Light as the down of the thistle,
Free as the winds that blow,
We roved there the beautiful summers,
The summers of long ago;
But his feet on the hills grew weary,
And, one of the autumn eves,
I made for my little brother
A bed of the yellow leaves.

Sweetly his pale arms folded
My neck in a meek embrace,
As the light of immortal beauty
Silently covered his face;
And when the arrows of sunset
Lodged in the tree-tops bright,
He fell, in his saint-like beauty,
Asleep by the gates of light.

Therefore, of all the pictures
That hang on Memory's wall,
The one of the dun old forest
Seemeth the best of all.

Submitted: Friday, April 11, 2014

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