Summer Song of the Strawberry Girl
A little girl is poor, but full of gratitude for the riches of the summer.
It is summer! it is summer! how beautiful it looks!
There is sunshine on the old gray hills, and sunshine on the brooks
A singing-bird on every bough, soft perfumes on the air,
A happy smile on each young lip, and gladness everywhere.
Oh! is it not a pleasant thing to wander through the woods,
To look upon the painted flowers, and watch the opening buds;
Or seated in the deep cool shade at some tall ash-tree’s root,
To fill my little basket with the sweet and scented fruit?
They tell me that my father’s poor – that is no grief to me
When such a blue and brilliant sky my upturned eye can see;
They tell me, too, that richer girls can sport with toy and gem;
It may be so – and yet, I think, I do not envy them.
When forth I go upon my way, a thousand toys are mine,
The clusters of dark violets, the wreaths of the wild vine;
My jewels are the primrose pale, the bind-weed, and the rose;
And sh0w me any courtly gem more beautiful than those.
And then the fruit! the glowing fruit, how sweet the scent it breathes!
I love to see its crimson cheek rest on the bright green leaves!
Summer’s own gift of luxury, in which the poor may share,
The wild-wood fruit my eager eye is seeking everywhere.
Oh! summer is a pleasant time, with all its sounds and sights;
Its dewy mornings, balmy eves, and tranquil calm delights;
I sigh when first I see the leaves fall yellow on the plain,
And all the winter long I sing – Sweet summer, come again.
Header illustration by ayelet_keshet.
1. The little girl in this poem says her father is poor, but it doesn’t matter to her. Why doesn’t it matter?
2. Are there any things in your life that you make you very happy? What are they?