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In Earliest Spring


  Tossing his mane of snows in wildest eddies and tangles,
    Lion-like, March cometh in, hoarse, with tempestuous breath,
  Through all the moaning chimneys, and thwart all the hollows and
    Round the shuddering house, threating of winter and death.

  But in my heart I feel the life of the wood and the meadow
    Thrilling the pulses that own kindred with fibres that lift
  Bud and blade to the sunward, within the inscrutable shadow,
    Deep in the oak's chill core, under the gathering drift.

  Nay, to earth's life in mine some prescience, or dream, or desire
    (How shall I name it aright?) comes for a moment and goes,--
  Rapture of life ineffable, perfect,--as if in the brier,
    Leafless there by my door, trembled a sense of the rose.


William Dean Howells