17 March 2014

The Blue Bird and Songsters of Spring

By P. Williamson.
Welcome, sweet bird, whose cheering note shall bring
The first "glad tidings" of approaching spring;
Welcome to this thy long deserted home,
From whence rude winter forced thee far to roam.
Thou com'st again the lovely grove to cheer,
And in they train the warbling choir appear;
Thy absence left the vernal woods in gloom,
At thy return the hills and valleys bloom.
Thy cheering note, ere twilight spring shall dawn,
Break on the ear sweet as the distant horn,
Thy presence make the verdant fields look gay,
Ere yet bright Phoebus' tinge the flowers of May.
The robbin red-breast, skipping o'er the lawn,
Waked into raptures, hails the rising morn,
And at the evening sun's departing beam,
Repeats new homage in his closing theme.
* Returning spring the swallow brings apace,
And the house-martin, both of kindred race;
But where they rest, or to what clime they go,
Is more perhaps than mortals here can know.
** Then comes the mock-bird, noblest of the throng!
Columbia's native bird and prince of song,
Melodious bird! mimic of all that sing,
So merrily chaunting, spreads thy silvery wing;
And o'er the smiling landscape tireless play,
From morn till night pour thy enchanting lay;
The whining cat-bird comes with sportive glee,
Who in his song is but the clown to thee.
And crow's fierce voice shall echo loud and shrill,
And every night the restless whip-poor-will;
The social wren, your house its place of rest,
And in the porch or window builds its nest,
Whose merry song is heard at dawning light,
And every ear will greet it with delight.
The sparrow, lone, unnotic'd, ne'er shall fall,
For he who made thee is the God of all;
Thy feeble voice as soon his ear shall meet,
As seraphs bright, who worship at his feet.
Haste, then, all songsters of the feathered throng;
To you these animating strains belong:
Creation haste! let one grand chorus ring,
From earth to heaven, the jubilee of spring.
* The place of migration of these birds is not known even to naturalists.
** Turdus poliglalus of America, falsely called English mocking-bird.
January 3, 1846. The Subterranean 3(32): 0 [4].