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I move the sweet forget-me-nots

That grow for happy lovers.
I slip, I slide, I gloom, I glance,

Among my skimming swallows;
I make the netted sunbeams dance

Against my sandy shallows.
I murmur under moon and stars

In brambly wildernesses;
I linger by my shingly bars;

I loiter round my cresses.
And out again I curve and flow

To join the brimming river;
For men may come and men may go,
But I go on forever.

ALFRED TENNYSON.

10

[blocks in formation]

bick - er

val

mong

the fern, To

down the

ley.

bicker (bik'er): to babble or quarrel grayling (grā'ling): a fish brimming (brim'ming): full

haunts (hänts) : places often visited coot (koot): a water fowl; a marsh hern (hếrn): a heron, a long-legged hen

bird that lives near water cover (kuv'er): clumps of bushes mallow (măl'lo): a wild flower eddying (ed'dý ing): making little sharps and trebles : musical terms,

meaning high or sharp sounds fallow (făl'lo): land not plowed shingly (shỉn'glý): gravelly foreland (för'land): a cape or prom- thorpe (thôrp): an old form for ontory

thorp, a village fret (frět): to carve out little curves waterbreak (wô'ter brāk) and corners

HELPS TO STUDY

waves

This

song of the brook is very well known. 1. What beautiful pictures does it give? 2. What pleasant sounds ? 3. Pick out some of the lines or stanzas that seem to run along just like the brook. 4. Certain lines are repeated over and over in a poem and are called a refrain. Find them here.

THE OWL

When cats run home and light is come,

And dew is cold upon the ground,
And the far-off stream is dumb,

And the whirring sail goes round,
And the whirring sail goes round;

Alone and warming his five wits,
The white owl in the belfry sits.

ALFRED TENNYSON.

[graphic][merged small]

Robert of Lincoln is a grown-up sort of name given to the bobolink. The name bobolink is given to this bird because it sounds like bis song.

Merrily swinging on brier and weed,

Near to the nest of his little dame,
Over the mountain side or mead,
Robert of Lincoln is telling his name:

Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link,

Spink, spank, spink;
Snug and safe is this nest of ours,
Hidden among the summer flowers,

Chee, chee, chee!

5

5

Robert of Lincoln is gayly dressed,

Wearing a bright, black wedding coat; White are his shoulders, and white his crest, Hear him call in his merry note:

Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link,

Spink, spank, spink;
Look what a nice new coat is mine;
Sure, there was never a bird so fine.

Chee, chee, chee!

10 Robert of Lincoln's Quaker wife,

Pretty and quiet, with plain brown wings, Passing at home a patient life, Broods in the grass while her husband sings:

Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link,

Spink, spank, spink;
Brood, kind creature; you need not fear
Thieves and robbers while I am here.

Chee, chee, chee!

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20

Six white eggs on a bed of hay,

Flecked with purple, a pretty sight: There as the mother sits all day,

Robert is singing with all his might:

5

10

Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link,

Spink, spank, spink,
Nice good wife that never goes out,
Keeping house while I frolic about.

Chee, chee, chee.
Soon as the little ones chip the shell,

Six wide mouths are open for food;
Robert of Lincoln bestirs him well,
Gathering seeds for the hungry brood:

Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link,

Spink, spank, spink,
This new life is likely to be
Hard for a gay young fellow like me.

Chee, chee, chee.
Robert of Lincoln at length is made

Sober with work, and silent with care,
Off is his holiday garment laid,
Half forgotten that merry air :

Bob-o'-link, bob-o'-link,

Spink, spank, spink,
Nobody knows but my mate and I,
Where our nest and our nestlings lie.

Chee, chee, chee.

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