Green calm below, blue quietness above.
~ John Greenleaf Whittier
If we sit down at set of sun,
And count the things that we have done,
And counting, find
One self-denying act, one word
That eased the heart of him who heard,
One glance, most kind,
That fell like sunshine where it went –
Then we may count that day well spent.
~ Ella Wheeler Wilcox
A glint of her hair or a flash of her shoulder –
That is the most I can boast to have seen,
Then all is lost as the shadows enfold her,
Forest glades making a screen of their green,
Could I cast off all the cares of tomorrow –
Could I forget all the fret of today
Then, my heart free from the burdens I borrow,
Nature's chaste spirit her face would display.
~ Ellis Parker Butler
The Wood Nymph
A silent man in life's affairs,
A thinker from a boy,
A peasant in his daily cares,
A poet in his joy.
~ John Clare
Photo: The only known photograph of John Clare, taken in 1862, when he was nearly seventy years of age, by W. W. Law of Northampton, the town where Clare lived in the asylum.
"My nerves are bad tonight. Yes, bad. Stay with me.
Speak to me. Why do you never speak? Speak.
What are you thinking of? What thinking? What?
I never know what you are thinking. Think."
~ T. S. Eliot
Photo: T. S. Eliot and his first wife Vivienne Haigh-Wood Eliot - 1932
O there is blessing in this gentle breeze,
A visitant that while it fans my cheek
Doth seem half-conscious of the joy it brings
From the green fields, and from yon azure sky.
Whate'er its mission, the soft breeze can come
To none more grateful than to me; escaped
From the vast city, where I long had pined
A discontented sojourner: now free,
Free as a bird to settle where I will.
What dwelling shall receive me? in what vale
Shall be my harbour? underneath what grove
Shall I take up my home? and what clear stream
Shall with its murmur lull me into rest?
The earth is all before me. With a heart
Joyous, nor scared at its own liberty,
I look about; and should the chosen guide
Be nothing better than a wandering cloud,
I cannot miss my way. I breathe again!
~ William Wordsworth