The Crocuses
Frances E. W. Harper

They heard the South wind sighing
   A murmur of the rain;
And they knew that Earth was longing
   To see them all again.

While the snow-drops still were sleeping
   Beneath the silent sod;
They felt their new life pulsing
   Within the dark, cold clod.

Not a daffodil nor daisy
   Had dared to raise its head;
Not a fairhaired dandelion
   Peeped timid from its bed;

Though a tremor of the winter
   Did shivering through them run;
Yet they lifted up their foreheads
   To greet the vernal sun.

And the sunbeams gave them welcome.
   As did the morning air
And scattered o'er their simple robes
   Rich tints of beauty rare.

Soon a host of lovely flowers
   From vales and woodland burst;
But in all that fair procession
   The crocuses were first.

First to weave for Earth a chaplet
   To crown her dear old head;
And to beautify the pathway
   Where winter still did tread.

And their loved and white haired mother
   Smiled sweetly 'neath the touch,
When she knew her faithful children
   Were loving her so much.

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