In the deep shadow of the porch
A slender bind-weed springs,
And climbs, like airy acrobat,
The trellises, and swings
And dances in the golden sun
In fairy loops and rings.
Its cup-shaped blossoms, brimmed with dew,
Like pearly chalices,
Hold cooling fountains, to refresh
The butterflies and bees;
And humming-birds on vibrant wings
Hover, to drink at ease.
And up and down the garden-bed,
Mid box and thyme and yew,
And spikes of purple lavender,
And spikes of larkspur blue,
The bind-weed tendrils win their way,
And find a passage through.
With touches coaxing, delicate,
And arts that never tire,
They tie the rose-trees each to each,
The lilac to the brier,
Making for graceless things a grace,
With steady, sweet desire.
Till near and far the garden growths.
The sweet, the frail, the rude,
Draw close, as if with one consent,
And find each other good,
Held by the bind-weed's pliant loops,
In a dear brotherhood.
Like one fair sister, slender, arch,
A flower in bloom and poise,
Gentle and merry and beloved,
Making no stir or noise,
But swaying, linking, blessing all
A family of boys.