Sonnet, To the Lilly by Ann Radcliffe

Soft silken flow’r! that in the dewy vale
   Unfolds thy modest beauties to the morn,
And breath’st thy fragrance on her wand’ring gale,
   O’er earth’s green hills and shadowy vallies born;

When day has closed his dazzling eye,
   And dying gales sink soft away;
When Eve steals down the western sky,
   And mountains, woods, and vales decay;

Thy tender cups, that graceful swell,
   Droop sad beneath her chilly dews;
Thy odours seek their silken cell,
   And twilight veils thy languid hues.

But soon, fair flow’r! the morn shall rise,
   And rear again thy pensive head;
Again unveil thy snowy dyes,
   Again thy velvet foliage spread.

Sweet child of Spring! like thee in sorrow’s shade,
   Full oft I mourn in tears, and droop forlorn:
And O! like thine, may light my gloom pervade,
   And Sorrow fly before Joy’s living morn!


Date: 1791

By: Ann Radcliffe (1764-1823)

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