Verse > Anthologies > Alfred H. Miles, ed. > Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century
Alfred H. Miles, ed.  Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century.  1907.
Poems and Songs.
II. They All Belong to Me
By Eliza Cook (1818–1889)
THERE are riches without measure
  Scattered thickly o’er the land;
There are heaps and heaps of treasure,
  Bright, beautiful, and grand;
There are forests, there are mountains,        5
  There are meadows, there are rills,
Forming everlasting fountains
  In the bosoms of the hills;
There are birds and there are flowers
  The fairest things that be—        10
And these great and joyful dowers,
  Oh! “they all belong to me.”
There are golden acres bending
  In the light of harvest rays,
There are garland branches blending        15
  With the breath of June’s sweet days
There are pasture grasses blowing
  In the dewy, moorland shade,
There are herds of cattle lowing
  In the midst of bloom and blade;        20
There are noble elms that quiver,
  As the gale comes full and free,
There are alders by the river,
  And “they all belong to me.”
I care not who may reckon        25
  The wheat piled up in sacks,
Nor who has power to beckon
  The woodman with his axe;
I care not who hold leases
  Of the upland or the dell,        30
Nor who may count the fleeces
  When the flocks are fit to sell.
While there’s beauty none can barter
  By the greensward and the tree:
Claim who will, by seal and charter,        35
  Yet “they all belong to me.”
There’s the thick and dingled cover
  Where the hare and pheasant play,
There are sheets of rosy clover,
  There are hedges crowned with May;        40
There are vines all dark and gushing.
  There are orchards ripe and red,
There are herds of wild deer crushing
  The heath-bells as they tread.
And ye, who count in money        45
  The value these may be,
Your hives but hold my honey,
  For “they all belong to me.”
Ye cannot shut the tree in,
  Ye cannot hide the hills,        50
Ye cannot wall the sea in,
  Ye cannot choke the rills;
The corn will only nestle
  In the broad arms of the sky,
The clover crop must wrestle        55
  With the common wind, or die.
And while these stores of treasure
  Are spread where I may see,
By God’s high, bounteous pleasure,
  “They all belong to me.”        60
What care I for the profit
  The stricken stem may yield?
I have the shadow of it
  While upright in the field.
What reck I of the riches        65
  The mill-stream gathers fast,
While I bask in shady niches,
  And see the brook go past?
What reck I who has title
  To the widest lands that be?        70
They are mine, without requital,
  God gave them all to me.
Oh! privilege and blessing,
  To find I ever own,
What great ones, in possessing        75
  Imagine theirs alone!
Oh! glory to the Maker,
  Who gave such boon to hold,
Who made me free partaker
  Where others buy with gold!        80
For while the woods and mountains
  Stand up where I can see,
While God unlocks the fountains,
  “They all belong to me!”

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