Mary Appleby

A poem by John Clare

I look upon the hedgerow flower,
I gaze upon the hedgerow tree,
I walk alone the silent hour,
And think of Mary Appleby.
I see her in the brimming streams,
I see her in the gloaming hour,
I hear her in my Summer dreams
Of singing bird and blooming flower.

For Mary is the dearest bird,
And Mary is the sweetest flower,
That in Spring bush was ever heard--
That ever bloomed on bank or bower.
O bonny Mary Appleby!
The sun did never sweeter shine
Than when in youth I courted thee,
And, dreaming, fancied you'd be mine.

The lark above the meadow sings,
Wood pigeons coo in ivied trees,
The butterflies, on painted wings,
Dance daily with the meadow bees.
All Nature is in happy mood,
The sueing breeze is blowing free.
And o'er the fields, and by the wood,
I think of Mary Appleby.

O bonny Mary Appleby;
My once dear Mary Appleby!
A crown of gold thy own should be,
My handsome Mary Appleby!
Thy face is like the Summer rose,
Its maiden bloom is all divine,
And more than all the world bestows
I'd give had Mary e'er been mine.

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