Updated: Dec 14, 2019
"To A Butterfly" (1801)
I'VE watched you now a full half-hour; Self-poised upon that yellow flower And, little Butterfly! indeed I know not if you sleep or feed. How motionless!--not frozen seas More motionless! and then What joy awaits you, when the breeze Hath found you out among the trees, And calls you forth again!
This plot of orchard-ground is ours; My trees they are, my Sister's flowers; Here rest your wings when they are weary; Here lodge as in a sanctuary! Come often to us, fear no wrong; Sit near us on the bough! We'll talk of sunshine and of song, And summer days, when we were young; Sweet childish days, that were as long As twenty days are now.
STAY near me--do not take thy flight! A little longer stay in sight! Much converse do I find in thee, Historian of my infancy! Float near me; do not yet depart! Dead times revive in thee: Thou bring'st, gay creature as thou art! A solemn image to my heart, My father's family!
Oh! pleasant, pleasant were the days, The time, when, in our childish plays, My sister Emmeline and I Together chased the butterfly! A very hunter did I rush Upon the prey:--with leaps and springs I followed on from brake to bush; But she, God love her, feared to brush The dust from off its wings.