Nonfiction > E.C. Stedman & E.M. Hutchinson, eds. > A Library of American Literature > 1861–1889
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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps.  A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes.  1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889
 
The Mountebanks
By Charles Henry Lüders (1858–1891)
 
OVER our heads the branches made
A canopy of woven shade.
 
The birds about this beechen tent
Like deft attendants came and went.
 
A shy wood-robin, fluting low,        5
Furnished the music for the show.
 
The cricket and the grasshopper
A portion of the audience were.
 
Thither did Fancy leap to fling
Light summersaults around the ring.        10
 
Wit, the sly jester of the Town,
And rustic Humor played the clown.
 
Reason was ringmaster, and waved
His whip when these his anger braved.
 
Wishes were horses that each rode        15
Unto his heart’s desire’s abode.
 
There Laughter and Delight and Glee
Performed their parts that all might see,
 
Till a sweet wind across the clover
Whispered: “At last, the show is over.”        20
 
And the broad shadow of a cloud
Moved from us like a moving crowd.
 
 
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