We grieve for the loss of youth so fair,
As every country child may share__
Whenever we walk the city street,
And watch the tread of children's feet.
So Poised and posed by a master's art,
Threading their way through hall and mart.
Daintiest ruffle and silken gown
Are not so fair as free arms brown.
Satin and kid on pallid, slow feet
Are far less fair than brown ones fleet;
And tiniest hands in "Jouvin's best,"
Daintily clasped in affected rest,
Are not so fair as plump ones. free,
Clasping fruits or swinging-from tree.
Country mothers, by the brown sun-bloom
Save their darlings from early tomb.
No city man or woman can see
Country children, wild with their glee,
Without a sigh for the rugged steep
Where mosses hang and roses creep;
For craggy ledges where sweet ferns grow,
And paths are white with arbutus-snow;
A sighing thought for that walk in the dew,
Through earliest clover fields he knew;