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sprouting grain, and the buds upon the līlacs swell and burst. The peaches bloom upon the wall

, and the plums wear bodices' of white. The sparkling oriõle picks string for his hammock' on the sycamore, and the spărrows twitter in pairs. The old elms throw down their dingy flowers, and color their spray

with green; and the brooks, where you throw your worm or the minnow, float down whole fleets of the crimson blossoms of the maple.

9. Finally, the oaks step into the opening quadrilles rf spring with grayish tufts of a modest verdure, which, by and by, wil be long and glossy leaves. The dõg-wood pitches his broad white tent, in the edge of the forest; the dandelions lie along the hillocks, like stars in a sky of green; and the wild cherry, growing in all the hedge-rows, without other culture than God's, lifts up to Him, thankfully, its tremulous white fingers.

10. Amid all this, come the rich rains of spring. The affections of a boy grow up with tears to water them; and the


blooms with showers. But the clouds hover over an April sky, timidly -like shadows upon innocence. The showers come gently, and drop daintily to the earth, --with now and then a glimpse of sunshine to make the drops bright-like so many tears of joy. The rain of winter is cold, and it comes in bitter scuds that blind you; but the rain of April steals upon you coyly, half reluctantly, yet lovingly—like the steps of a bride to the altar.

11. It does not găther like the storm-clouds of winter, gray and heavy along the horī'zon, and creep with subtle and insensible approaches to the věry zenith ;' but there are a scores of white-winged swimmers afloat, that your eye has chased, as you lay fatigued with the delicious languor of an April sun ;nor have you scarce noticed that a little běvy of those floating clouds had grouped together in a sombero company.

12. But presently, you see across the fields, the dark gray streaks stretching like lines of mists, from the green bosom of


* Bid'i ces, corsets ; stays.--" Hảm' mock, bed; nest.— Min' now, a very small fresh-water fish, used for bait.-—*Qua drille', a dance.- Hoil' zon, the line where the sky and earth appear to meet.- Subtle (sůt' tl), sly; artful; cunning.—'Zénith, the point in the sky di. rectly overhead. — Score, twenty; any indefinite number.--° Bèv' y. company. - 10 Sønn' ber, dark ; gloomy.

the valiey, to that spot of sky where the company of clouds is loitering; and with an easy shifting of the helm,' the fleet of swimmers come drifting over you, and drop their burden into the dancing pools, and make the flowers glisten, and the eaves drip with their crystal bounty. The cattle linger still, cropping the new-come grass; and childhood laughs joyously at the warm rain ;—or under the cottage roof, cătches, with eager ear, the patter of its fall.



1. MHE blue-birds and the violets

Are with us once again,
And promises of summer spot?

The hill-side and the plain.
2. The clouds around the mountain tops

Are riding on the breeze,
Their trailing äzure: trains of mist

Are tangled in the trees.
3. The snow-drifts, which have lain so long,

Haunting' the hidden nooks,
Like guilty ghosts have slipp'd away,

Unseen into the brooks.

4. The streams are fed with generous -rains,

They drink the way-side springs,
And flutter down from



Upon their foamy wings.
5. Through all the long wet nights they brawl,

By mountain homes remote,
Till woodmen in their sleep behold

Their ample rafts afloat.

Helm, an instrument for steering a boat; here means direction given to the clouds._"Spot, mark. — Azure (år' ér), light-blue; sky-colored.

_* Håunt'ing, intruding on ; disturbing ; frequenting, as an apparition or spirit. --Ghost, apparition ; the soul of a person who is dead.-6 Briwl, make a great noise.

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6. The lazy wheel that hung so dry

Above the idle stream,
Whirls wildly in the misty dark,

And through the miller's dream.
7. Loud torrent unto torrent calls,

Till at the mountain's feet,
Flashing afar their spectral light,

The noisy waters meet.
8. They meet, and through the lowlands sweep,

Toward briny bay and lake,
Proclaiming to the distant towns
“The country is awake !"



3. BIRDS OF SPRING. MHOSE who have passed the winter in the country, are sensi

ble of the delightful influences that accompany the earliest indications of Spring; and of these, none are more delightful than the first notes of the birds.

2. The appearance of the blue-bird, so poetically yet truly described by Wilson, gladdens the whole landscape. You hear his soft warble in every field. He sociably approaches your habitation, and takes up his residence in your vicinity.'

3. The happiest bird of our spring, however, and one that rivals the European lark, in my estimation, is the Boblincon, or Boblink, as he is commonly called. He arrives at this choice portion of the year, which, in this latitude, answers to the description of the month of May so often given by the poets. With us it begins about the middle of May, and lasts until nearly the middle of June.

4. Earlier than this, winter is apt to return on its traces, and to blight the opening beauties of the year; and later than this, begin the parching, and panting, and dissolving heats of

Spéc' tral, pertaining to the appearance of a person who is dead; ghostly. In di cà' tion, mark; sign. – Vi cin'i ty, neighborhood."Blight, injure or destroy.



But in this gēnial' interval nature is in all her freshness and fragrance: “the rains are over and gone, the flowers appear upon the earth, the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in the land."

5. The trees are now in their fullest foliage and brightest verdure;' the woods are gay with the clustered flowers of the laurel; the air is perfumed by the sweet-brier and the wild-rose; the meadows are enameled6 with clover-blossoms; while the young apple, the peach, and the plum begin to swell, and the cherry to glow, among the green leaves.

6. This is the chosen season of revelry? of the boblink. He comes amidst the pomp and fragrance of the season; his life seems all sensibility and enjoyment, all song and sunshine. He is to be found in the soft bosoms of the freshest and sweetest měadows; and is most in song when the clover is in blossom. He perches on the topmost twig of a tree, or on some löng, flaunting weed, and as ne rises and sinks with the breeze, pours forth a succession of rich, tinkling notes; crowding one upon another, like the outpouring melody of the sky-lark, and possessing the same rapturous' character.

7. Sometimes he pitches from the summit of a tree, begins his song as soon as he is upon the wing, and flutters tremulously down to the earth, as if overcome with ecstasy" at his own music. Sometimes he is in pursūit of his paramour ;'2 always in full song, as if he would win her by his melody; and always with the same appearance of intoxication' and delight.

8. Of all the birds of our groves and meadows, the boblink was the envy of my boyhood. He crossed my path in the sweetest weather, and the sweetest season of the year, when all nature called to the fields, and the rural!4 feeling throbbed in every bosom; but when I, luckless urchin! was doomed to be



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"Gé' ni al, favorable; natural.-—Frå' grance, sweetness of smell.*Turtle (têr' tl), here means a dove or pigeon.— FO' li age, leaves.*Verd' ure, greenness.— * En åm' eled, ornamented; appearing like glass.

- 'Rev' el ry, extreme animal enjoyment; noisy feasting.–Sen si bil' ity, state of being easily affected ; delicacy of feeling.–Flåunt' ing, spreading out loosely.—10 Råpt' ur ous, full of joy.-- Ec' sta sy, excessive or overpowering delight.—"Pår' a mour, partner in love.- 18 In tox. i cà' tion, drunkenness; an extreme elevation of spirits. — " Rural (ro' ral), belonging to or suiting the country.

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mewed up, during the livelõng day, in that surgatory' of boyhood, a school-room, it seemed as if the little rarlet mocked at me, as he flew by in full song, and sought to taunt me with his happier lot. Oh, how I envied him! No lessons, no tasks, no hateful school; nothing but holiday, frolic, green fields, and fine weather!

9. Further observation and experience have given me a differunt idea of this little feathered voluptuary," which I will venture to impart for the benefit of my school-boy readers, who may regard him with the same unqualified envy and admiration which I once indulged. I have shown him only as I saw him at first, in what I may call the poetical part of his career, when he in a manner devoted himself to elegant pursuits and enjoyments, and was a bird of music, and sõng, and taste, and sensibility, and refinement. While this lasted, he was sacred from injury; the věry school-boy would not fling a stone at him, and the merest rustic would pause to listen to his strain. But mark the difference.

10. As the year advances, as the clover-blossoms disappear, and the spring fades into summer, his notes cease to vibrate on the ear.

He gradually gives up his elegant tastes and habits, dõffs his poetical and professional suit of black, assumes a russet or rather dusty garb,' and enters into the gross enjoyments of common, vulgar birds. He becomes a bon vivant, a mere gormand;" thinking of nothing but good cheer, and gormandizing on the seeds of the long grasses on which he lately swung, and chanted so musically.

11. He begins to think there is nothing like “the joys of the table,” if I may be allowed to apply that convivial" phrase to his indulgences. He now grows discontented with plain, everyday fare, and sets out on a gastronòm'ical' tour, in search of foreign luxuries. He is to be found in myriads among the reeds

*Pur' ga to ry, place of punishment._* Vår' let, a saucy fellow; here means the Boblink.- Nothing (nůth' ing).- Vo lůpt' u a ry, a seeker of pleasure alone. - Re fine' ment, high state of cultivation.-- Vl' bråte, move backward and forward ; quiver.- Gårb, dress. Bon vivant (bỏng vẻ vẫng), a good liver.2° Gor mand, a glutton.– Gor mandiz ing, eating greedily.-" Con viv'i al, relating to a feast; jovial; gay. – 18 Gas tro nom' ic al, relating to the stomach ; seeking something to gratify appetite.



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