The Summer House.

A poem by Hattie Howard

Midway upon the lawn it stands,
So picturesque and pretty;
Upreared by patient artist hands,
Admired of all the city;
The very arbor of my dream,
A covert cool and airy,
So leaf-embowered as to seem
The dwelling of a fairy.

It is the place to lie supine
Within a hammock swinging,
To watch the sunset, red as wine,
To hear the crickets singing;
And while the insect world around
Is buzzing - by the million -
No wing├Ęd thing above the ground
Intrudes in this pavilion.

It is the place, at day's decline,
To tell the old, old story
Behind the dark Madeira vine,
Behind the morning glory;
To confiscate the rustic seat
And barter stolen kisses,
For honey must be twice as sweet
In such a spot as this is.

It is the haunt where one may get
Relief from petty trouble,
May read the latest day's gazette
About the "Klondike" bubble:
How shanties rise like golden courts.
Where sheep wear glittering fleeces,
How gold is picked up - by the quartz -
And all get rich as Croesus.

Here hid away from dust and heat,
Secure from rude intrusion,
While willing lips the thought repeat,
So grows the fond illusion:
That happiness the product is
Of lazy, languid dozing,
Of soft midsummer reveries,
Half-waking, half-reposing.

And here in restful interlude,
Life's fallacies forgetting,
Its frailties - such a multitude -
The fuming and the fretting,
Amid the fragrance, dusk, and dew,
The happy soul at even
May walk abroad, and interview
Bright messengers from Heaven.

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