Laura Elizabeth Richards

(1850-1943 / the United States)

Bird Song


The Robin sings of willow-buds,
Of snowflakes on the green;
The bluebird sings of Mayflowers,
The crackling leaves between;
The veery has a thousand tales
To tell to girl and boy;
But the oriole, the oriole,
Sings, 'Joy! joy! joy!'

The pewee calls his little mate,
Sweet Phoebe, gone astray,
The warbler sings,
'What fun, what fun,
To tilt upon the spray!'
The cuckoo has no song, but clucks,
Like any wooden toy;
But the oriole, the oriole,
Sings, 'Joy! joy! joy!'

The grosbeak sings the rose's birth,
And paints her on his breast;
The sparrow sings of speckled eggs,
Soft brooded in the nest.
The wood-thrush sings of peace,
'Sweet peace, Sweet peace,' without alloy;
But the oriole, the oriole,
Sings 'Joy! joy! joy!'

Submitted: Friday, September 03, 2010

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