Nonfiction > E.C. Stedman & E.M. Hutchinson, eds. > A Library of American Literature > 1821–1834
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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps.  A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes.  1891.
Vol. V: Literature of the Republic, Part II., 1821–1834
 
To the Fringed Gentian
By William Cullen Bryant (1794–1878)
 
[From Poetical Works of William Cullen Bryant. Edited by Parke Godwin. 1883.]

THOU blossom bright with autumn dew,
And colored with the heaven’s own blue,
That openest when the quiet light
Succeeds the keen and frosty night.
 
Thou comest not when violets lean        5
O’er wandering brooks and springs unseen,
Or columbines, in purple dressed,
Nod o’er the ground-bird’s hidden nest.
 
Thou waitest late and com’st alone,
When woods are bare and birds are flown,        10
And frosts and shortening days portend
The aged year is near his end.
 
Then doth thy sweet and quiet eye
Look through its fringes to the sky,
Blue—blue—as if that sky let fall        15
A flower from its cerulean wall.
 
I would that thus, when I shall see
The hour of death draw near to me,
Hope, blossoming within my heart,
May look to heaven as I depart.        20
 
 
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