06 November 2013

The Silver Bird's-Nest - An 1853 Poem

By Miss H.F. Gould.

We were shown a beautiful specimen of the ingenuity of birds, a few days since, by Dr. Cook. It was a bird's-nest made entirely of silver wires, beautifully woven together. The nest was found on a sycamore tree, by Dr. Francis Beard, of York County. It was the nest of a hanging-bird; and the material was probably obtained from a soldier's epaulette, which it had found. — West Chester Village Record.

A stranded soldier's epaulette
The waters cast ashore,
A little winged rover met,
And eyed it o'er and o'er.
The silver bright so pleased her sight,
On that lone idle vest;
She knew not why she should deny,
Herself a silver nest.
The shining wire she pecked and twirled,
The bore it to her bough,
Where on a flowery twig 'twas curled,
The birds can show you how.
But when enough of that bright stuff
The cunning builder bore,
Her house to make — she would not take,
Nor did she covet more.
And when the little artisan,
While neither pride nor guilt,
Had entered in her pretty plan,
Her resting place had built;
With here and there a plume to spare
About her own light form,
Of these, inlaid, with skill she made
A lining, soft and warm.
But do thou think the tender brood
She fondled there and fed,
Were prouder when they understood
The sheen about their bed?
Do you suppose they ever rose,
Of higher powers possessed,
Because they knew they peeped and grew
Within a silver nest?
June 11, 1853. Rockland County Journal 6(19): 1.