Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. II. Love
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume II. Love.  1904.
III. Love’s Beginnings
The Whistle
Robert Story (1795–1860)
“YOU have heard,” said a youth to his sweetheart, who stood,
  While he sat on a corn-sheaf, at daylight’s decline,—
“You have heard of the Danish boy’s whistle of wood?
  I wish that that Danish boy’s whistle were mine.”
“And what would you do with it?—tell me,” she said,        5
  While an arch smile played over her beautiful face.
“I would blow it,” he answered; “and then my fair maid
  Would fly to my side, and would here take her place.”
“Is that all you wish it for? That may be yours
  Without any magic,” the fair maiden cried:        10
“A favor so slight one’s good nature secures;”
  And she playfully seated herself by his side.
“I would blow it again,” said the youth, “and the charm
  Would work so, that not even Modesty’s check
Would be able to keep from my neck your fine arm:”        15
  She smiled,—and she laid her fine arm round his neck.
“Yet once more would I blow, and the music divine
  Would bring me the third time an exquisite bliss:
You would lay your fair cheek to this brown one of mine,
  And your lips, stealing past it, would give me a kiss.”        20
The maiden laughed out in her innocent glee,—
  “What a fool of yourself with your whistle you ’d make!
For only consider, how silly ’t would be
  To sit there and whistle for—what you might take!”

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