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MARY HOWITT
English poet, author and moralist
(1799 - 1888)

A child no more! a maiden now--
  A graceful maiden, with a gentle brow;
    A cheek tinged lightly and a dove-like eye;
      And all hearts bless her as she passes by.
      - [Maidenhood]

God sends children for another purpose than merely to keep up the race--to enlarge our hearts, to make us unselfish, and full of kindly sympathies and affections; to give our souls higher aims, and to call out all our faculties to extended enterprise and exertion; to bring round our fireside bright faces and happy smiles, and loving, tender hearts. My soul blesses the Great Father every day, that He has gladdened the earth with little children.
      - [Children]

He is happiest who hath power to gather wisdom from a flower.
      - [Flowers]

I know he's coming by this sign,
  That baby's almost wild;
    See how he laughs and crows and starts--
      Heaven, bless the merry child!
        He's father's self in face and limb,
          And father's heart is strong in him.
            Shout, baby, shout! and clap thy hands,
              For father on the threshold stands.
      - [Children]

There's silence in the harvest field;
  And blackness in the mountain glen,
    And cloud that will not pass away
      From the hill-tops for many a day;
        And stillness round the homes of men.
      - [Winter]

"Words, words, words!" says Hamlet, disparagingly. But God preserve us from the destructive power of words! There are words which can separate hearts sooner than sharp swords. There are words whose sting can remain through a whole life!
      - [Words]

When on the breath of Autumn's breeze,
  From pastures day and brown,
    Goes floating, like an idle thought,
      The fair, white thistle-down;
        O, then what joy to walk at will,
          Upon the golden harvest-hill!
      - Corn-Fields [Thistles]

Heart's ease! one could look for half a day
  Upon this flower, and shape in fancy out
    Full twenty different tales of love and sorrow,
      That gave this gentle name.
      - Heart's Ease [Pansies]

Old England is our home and Englishmen are we,
  Our tongue is known is every clime, our flag on every sea.
      - Old England is Our Home [England]

Then take me on your knee, mother;
  And listen, mother of mine.
    A hundred fairies danced last night,
      And the harpers they were nine.
      - The Fairies of the Caldon Low [Fairies]

Yes! in the poor man's garden grow,
  Far more than herbs and flowers,
    Kind thoughts, contentment, peace of mind,
      And joy for weary hours.
      - The Poor Man's Garden [Contentment]

"Will you walk into my parlour?"
  Said a spider to a fly;
    "'Tis the prettiest little parlour
      That ever you did spy."
      - The Spider and the Fly [Spiders]

Roads are wet where'er one wendeth,
  And with rain the thistle bendeth,
    And the brook cries like a child!
      Not a rainbow shines to cheer us;
        Ah! the sun comes never near us,
          And the heavens look dark and wile.
      - The Wet Summer, from the German [Storms]


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