The Water Nymphs

A poem by Ellis Parker Butler

They hide in the brook when I seek to draw nearer,
Laughing amain when I feign to depart;
Often I hear them, now faint and now clearer
Innocent bold or so sweetly discreet.
Are they Nymphs of the Stream at their playing
Or but the brook I mistook for a voice?
Little care I; for, despite harsh Time’s flaying,
Brook voice or Nymph voice still makes me rejoice.

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