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Now each tree, by summer crown'd,'
There the dew its couch hath made-
Where the boughs, with dewy gloom,
The Tree in Summer.
14. The tree stood again in loveliness; she was dressed in more than her former beauty; she was very fair; joy smiled around her on every side. The birds flew back to her bosom. They sang on every branch a hymn to the angel of the leaves.
MISS H. F. GOULD.
Where the lily's tender gleam
VEST'-URE, garment; robe.
4A-BIDE', remain with thee.
2 COME'-LY (kum'-ly), suitable; beautiful. 5 UN-SUL'-LIED, not sullied; not sainted. ZEPH'-YR (zef'-er), the west wind; any 6 PRO-FAN'ED, polluted; defiled. soft, mild breeze. 7 CROWN'D, adorned with leaves.
"THEN deep in the greenwood rode he,
"But the trees all kept their counsel;1
"Only the aspen2 pattered
With a sound like growing rain,
Then faltered to silence again."
J. RUSSELL LOWELL. Ballad of the Singing Leaves.
4. There are no objects in nature more familiar to us than the leaves of trees; there are none upon which most persons look with greater interest and delight, and none around which cluster a greater variety of pleasing associations.3 In the different stages of their growth and decay they are often
referred to as emblems of the life of man; their freshness in spring aptly denoting the season of youth and hope, and their autumnal hues admonishing of the approaching winter of old age, when, life's pleasures and enjoyments being over, man is often forced to say,
"I have lived long enough; my way of life
5. The writings of all ages abound in poetical imagery drawn from the vegetable world; and where vegetation is the most abundant, it has exerted the greatest influence upon the literature of the people.
"In Eastern lands they talk in flowers,
And they tell in a garden their loves and cares;
On its leaves a mystics language bears."-PERCIVAL.
6. The "flowers of spring," the "green fields," the "ripened fruit,” the “decaying herbage," whether they teem with cheering or with saddening associations, are things that memory ever loves to dwell upon. How natural was it that the poet, in describing Falstaff's dying moments, should paint even the hoary profligate, in his spirit wanderings, as "babbling of green fields." And how touchingly does Cardinal Wolsey, from the similitude1o of a plant, portray the vicissitudes11 of human life:
"This is the state of man: To-day he puts forth
8. The sacred writers draw some of their most beautiful imagery from the same sources. What more appropriate pictures of the brevity12 of human life can be given than these: "We all do fade as a leaf." "We are like grass which groweth up; in the morning it flourisheth; in the evening it is cut down, and withereth." The righteous are declared to be "like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season," and "whose leaf also shall not
wither;" while the ungodly are compared to "an oak whose leaf fadeth, and a garden that hath no water."
9. Solomon, speaking in the person of the coming Savior, says, "I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys." The Savior himself spoke of the righteous as the wheat, and of the wicked as the tares; and he likened11 the kingdom of heaven to a grain of mustard-seed, which, from the smallest beginning, "becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof." He also taught of the coming of his kingdom from the parable of the fig-tree; and we are told that in the New Jerusalem was the “tree of life, whose leaves were for the healing of the nations."
10. Flowers speak a varied language, and reach the heart not only in its seasons of joy, but in its hours of sadness also. Nothing can more forcibly remind us of joys forever fled than the pale, perishing flowers of autumn:
"Pale flowers! pale perishing flowers!
On rapid, rapid wings:
Last words half uttered,
Last looks of dying friends."
C. B. SOUTHEY.
11. We can hardly conceive of any more natural associa tion of ideas than that which makes a rosebud the emblem of infant loveliness; a full-blown rose the type13 of blooming womanhood; and which likens14 extreme old age to the "last leaf" of autumn, which has survived all its kindred, and now, with the approaching blasts of winter, trembles to its fall. As a fitting illustration of the latter of these emblems, we introduce the following gem from a favorite American poet.
one thing represents another, etc.; as
9 PROF'-LI-GATE, a man abandoned to vice.
12 BREV'-I-TY, shortness.
13 TYPE, that which represents something
"THEIR COUNSEL," their own secrets. As'-PEN, a species of poplar.
3 As So-CI-A-TIONS, connected ideas; or, such a connection of ideas that one naturally suggests or calls up others; as when the leaves of spring remind us of the sea-10 son of youth, of youthful hopes, etc.
4 EM-BLEMS, pictures or representations. 5 SERE, dry; withered.
6 IM'-AGE-RY, lively descriptions, in which 14 LIK'-ENS, compares.