In a fair and sunny forest glade
O'erarched with chesnuts old,
Through which the radiant sunbeams made
A network of bright gold,
A girl smiled softly to herself,
And dreamed the hours away;
Lulled by the sound of the murmuring brook
With the summer winds at play.
Jewels gleamed not in the tresses fair
That fell in shining showers,
Naught decked that brow of beauty rare
But a wreath of forest flowers;
And the violet wore no deeper blue
Than her own soft downcast eye,
Whilst her bright cheek with the rose's hue
In loveliness well might vie.
But she was too fair to bloom unknown
By forest or valley side,
And long ere two sunny years had flown,
The girl was a wealthy bride -
Removed to so high and proud a sphere
That she well at times might deem
The humble home of her childhood dear
A fleeting, changeful dream.
No more her foot sought the grassy glade
At the break of summer day;
No more neath the chesnut spreading shade
In reverie sweet she lay;
But in abodes of wealth and pride,
With serious, stately mien,
That envy's rancorous tongue defied,
She now alone was seen.
But was she happier? Who might know?
Wealth, fortune, on her smiled;
Yet there were some who whispered low
That she, fates favored child,
Oft pressed her brow with a weary hand,
In gay and festive hours,
And fain would change her jewell'd band
For a wreath of forest flowers.