Poem of the day

by Christopher Smart (1722-1771)

Now the winds are all composure,
   But the breath upon the bloom,
Blowing sweet o’er each inclosure
   Grateful off’rings of perfume.

Tansy, calaminth and daisies
   On the river’s margin thrive;
And accompany the mazes
   Of the stream that leaps alive.

Muse, accordant to the season,
   Give the numbers life and air;
When the sounds and objects reason
   In behalf of praise and pray’r.

All the scenes of nature quicken,
   By the genial spirit fann’d;
And the painted beauties thicken,
   Colour’d by the master’s hand.

Earth her vigour repossessing
   As the blasts are held in ward,
Blessing heap’d and press’d on blessing,
   Yield the measure of the Lord.

Beeches, without order seemly,
   Shade the flow’rs of annual birth,
And the lily smiles supremely,
   Mention’d by the Lord on earth.

Couslips seize upon the fallow,
   And the cardamine in white,
Where the corn-flow’rs join the mallow,
   Joy and health, and thrift unite.

Study sits beneath her arbour,
   By the bason’s glossy side;
While the boat from out its harbour
   Exercise and pleasure guide.

Pray’r and praise be mine employment,
   Without grudging or regret;
Lasting life, and long enjoyment
   Are not here, and are not yet.

Hark! aloud, the black-bird whistles,
   With surrounding fragrance blest,
And the goldfinch in the thistles
   Makes provision for her nest.

Ev’n the hornet hives his honey,
   Bluecap builds his stately dome,
And the rocks supply the coney
   With a fortress and an home.

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