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Poem by William Cullen Bryant


I gazed upon the glorious sky 
And the green mountains round, 
And thought that when I came to lie 
At rest within the ground, 
Twere pleasant, that in flowery June, 
When brooks send up a cheerful tune, 
And groves a joyous sound, 
The sextons hand, my grave to make, 
The rich, green mountain-turf should break. 

A cell within the frozen mould, 
A coffin borne through sleet, 
And icy clods above it rolled, 
While fierce the tempests beat-- 
Away!--I will not think of these-- 
Blue be the sky and soft the breeze, 
Earth green beneath the feet, 
And be the damp mould gently pressed 
Into my narrow place of rest. 

There through the long, long summer hours, 
The golden light should lie, 
And thick young herbs and groups of flowers 
Stand in their beauty by. 
The oriole should build and tell 
His love-tale close beside my cell; 
The idle butterfly 
Should rest him there, and there be heard 
The housewife bee and humming-bird. 

And what if cheerful shouts at noon 
Come, from the village sent, 
Or songs of maids, beneath the moon 
With fairy laughter blent? 
And what if, in the evening light, 
Betrothed lovers walk in sight 
Of my low monument? 
I would the lovely scene around 
Might know no sadder sight nor sound. 

I know that I no more should see 
The seasons glorious show, 
Nor would its brightness shine for me, 
Nor its wild music flow; 
But if, around my place of sleep, 
The friends I love should come to weep, 
They might not haste to go. 
Soft airs, and song, and light, and bloom 
Should keep them lingering by my tomb. 

These to their softened hearts should bear 
The thought of what has been, 
And speak of one who cannot share 
The gladness of the scene; 
Whose part, in all the pomp that fills 
The circuit of the summer hills, 
Is that his grave is green; 
And deeply would their hearts rejoice 
To hear again his living voice.

William Cullen Bryant

William Cullen Bryant's other poems:
  1. The Journey of Life
  2. To the Apennines
  3. Ode for an Agricultural Celebration
  4. The Hurricane
  5. William Tell

Poems of the other poets with the same name:

  • John Clare June ("Now summer is in flower and natures hum")
  • Francis Ledwidge June ("Broom out the floor now, lay the fender by")
  • Madison Cawein June ("Hotly burns the amaryllis")
  • Archibald Lampman June ("Long, long ago, it seems, this summer morn")
  • Amy Levy June ("Last June I saw your face three times")
  • John Payne June ("THE empress of the year, the meadows' queen")
  • Edgar Guest June ("June is here, the month of roses, month of brides and month of bees")

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