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CHILDHOOD.                                                          71
There was snow all about her, gray clouds over´┐Żhead ;
The trees all looked dead. Then how do you think Daffy-dowu-dilly felt, When the suu would not shine, and the ice would not melt ?
" Cold weather!" thought Dafty, still working away;
"The earth's hard to-day! There's but a half-inch of my leaves to be seen, And two-thirds of that is more yellow than green!
" I can't do much yet, but I'll do what I cau.
It's well I began! For, unless I can manage to lift up my head, The people will think that the Spring herself's dead!"
So, little by little, she brought her leaves out,
All clustered about; And then her bright flowers began to unfold, Till Daffy stood robed iu her spring green and gold.
O Daffy-down-dilly, so brave and so true!
I wish all were like you! So ready for duty in all sorts of weather, And holding forth courage and beauty together.
A shining Hour, with golden plumes.
Was ladeu with a deed Of generous sacrifice, a child
Had done for one in need.
And one was bearing up a prayer
A little child had said, All full of penitence and love,
While kneeling by his bed.
And thus they glided on, and gave Their records, dark and bright,
To Him who marks each passing hour Of childhood's day and night.
From the Scandinavian.
Hearken, child, unto a story,
For the moon is in the sky, And across her shield of silver
See two tiny cloudlets fly.
Watch them closely, mark them sharply, As across the light they pass:
Seem they not to have the figures Of a little lad and lass ?
See, my child, across their shoulders
Lies a little pole; and lo! Yonder speck is just the bucket
Swinging softly to and fro.
It is said these little children, Many and many a summer night,
To a little well, far northward, Wandered in the still moonlight.
To the wayside well they trotted, Filled their little buckets there;
And the moon-man, looking downward, Saw how beautiful they were.
Quoth the man, " How vexed and sulky
Looks the little rosy boy! But the little handsome maiden
Trips behind him full of joy.
" To the well behind the hedge-row Trot the little lad and maiden ;
Mrs. Gordon.
Amid the blue and starry sky,
A group of Hours, one even, Met, as they took their upward flight
Into the highest heaven.
And they were going up to heaven,
With all that had been done By little children, good or bad,
Since the last rising sun.
And some had gold and purple wings, Some drooped like faded flowers,
And sadly soared to tell the tale, That they were misspent Hours.
Some glowed with rosy hopes and smiles,
And some had many a tear; Others had unkind words and acts
To carry upward there.

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III