Prosperity and Adversity

Albery Allson Whitman

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When first the young year inhales the sweetened air,
And painted landscapes kiss her tender feet,
The constant throat of music everywhere
Is burdened with her meed of praises sweet.

The clear brook panting from the ivied steep,
A crystal tribute sings within the dell;
And in the branchy wood secluded deep
Soft echo marks the sounds that please her well.

Till blooming Summer drops her latest charms,
Contentment tunes her reed in labor's ear;
Till russet plenty crowns the joyous farms,
The tongue of greetings hails the jovial year.

But when the sullen North begins to wail,
Old friends forsake her, leaving one by one;
Till all untended in her leafless vale,
The naked year is left to die alone.

Then saddened blasts convey her snowy bier,
And only blustry storm above her weeps,
While mournful woods attempt a feeble cheer,
And cold drear suns but glance at where she sleeps.

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