Paul Hamilton Hayne

* * *

NOW, while the rear-guard of the flying year,
Rugged December on the season's verge
Marshals his pale days to the mournful dirge
Of muffled winds in far-off forests drear,
Good friend! turn with me to our in-door cheer;
Draw nigh; the huge flames roar upon the hearth,
And this sly sparkler is of subtlest birth,
And a rich vintage, poet souls hold dear;
Mark how the sweet rogue wooes us! Sit thee down,
And we will quaff, and quaff, and drink our fill,
Topping the spirits with a Bacchanal crown,
Till the funereal blast shall wail no more,
But silver-throated clarions seem to thrill,
And shouts of triumph peal along the shore.

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