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The Bobolinks are Singing

 


  Out of its fragrant heart of bloom,--
    The bobolinks are singing!
  Out of its fragrant heart of bloom
  The apple-tree whispers to the room,
  "Why art thou but a nest of gloom,
    While the bobolinks are singing?"


  The two wan ghosts of the chamber there,--
    The bobolinks are singing!
  The two wan ghosts of the chamber there
  Cease in the breath of the honeyed air,
  Sweep from the room and leave it bare,
    While the bobolinks are singing.


  Then with a breath so chill and slow,--
    The bobolinks are singing!
  Then with a breath so chill and slow,
  It freezes the blossoms into snow,
  The haunted room makes answer low,
    While the bobolinks are singing.


  "I know that in the meadow-land,--
    The bobolinks are singing!
  I know that in the meadow-land
  The sorrowful, slender elm-trees stand,
  And the brook goes by on the other hand,
    While the bobolinks are singing.


  "But ever I see, in the brawling stream,--
    The bobolinks are singing!
  But ever I see in the brawling stream
  A maiden drowned and floating dim,
  Under the water, like a dream,
    While the bobolinks are singing.


  "Buried, she lies in the meadow-land!--
    The bobolinks are singing!
  Buried, she lies in the meadow-land,
  Under the sorrowful elms where they stand.
  Wind, blow over her soft and bland,
    While the bobolinks are singing.


  "O blow, but stir not the ghastly thing,--
    The bobolinks are singing!
  O blow, but stir not the ghastly thing
  The farmer saw so heavily swing
  From the elm, one merry morn of spring,
    While the bobolinks were singing.


  "O blow, and blow away the bloom,--
    The bobolinks are singing!
  O blow, and blow away the bloom
  That sickens me in my heart of gloom,
  That sweetly sickens the haunted room,
    While the bobolinks are singing!"



 

William Dean Howells