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Henry Alford

(1810-1871 / England)


Thou little flower, that on thy stem
Totterest as the breezes blow;
There is no strife with thee and them,
They kiss thee as they go.

The pretty lambs welcome their life
In the fresh morning of the year;
Taking no forethought of the knife,
They play, and do not fear.

Bow down thy head, thou little flower,
No longer show so trim and gay;
Lie still and pass thine evil hour,
Look up another day.

Thou pretty lamb, on tender sward
No more of thy quaint skippings take;
Cheat thy soft life of fate so hard,
Lie still, and do not wake.

They will not heed--for some kind Power
Long as the sun and stars remain,
Hath cast together in one hour
The lots of joy and pain.

From conflict of the stern and mild
Rises the life of gentlest things;
And out of mixtures strange and wild
Most quiet beauty springs.

Submitted: Monday, April 19, 2010
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