Love's Messengers

by George Arnold

George Arnold

SUMMER Winds, whispering over the rye,
Kissing the roses and hurrying by,
Where have ye latest been, 0 where?
Merrily tangling my maiden’s hair?
Wafting the tresses over her cheek,
And playing among them at hide-and-seek?
Or trying, with delicate scents of the South,
To rival the breath from her own sweet mouth?

Tell me, Summer Winds, fresh and fair,
Where have ye latest been, 0 where?
But the balmy breezes floated away,
Daintily sighing—no word said they.

Bear ye no word from my maiden to me?
Did she not whisper her love to ye?
Ah! well do I know that her fondest dreams
By the sun’s warm light or the moon’s pale beams
Are ever of me; and the love she bears
Oft breaks from her sweet lips unawares!
Has she not murmured some tender word,
That ye, as ye floated by, have heard?
Tell me, Summer Winds, frolic and free,
What word has my maiden sent to me?
But the balmy breezes frolicked away,
Daintily sighing—no word said they.

0, faithless Winds! since thus ye are still,
And bring no message my heart to thrill,
I will send ye again to my maiden’s side,
To tell her I’ll meet her at even-tide.
So fly—fly fast o’er the waving rye—
The roses are lovely, but pass them by—
Bid them to wait for the kisses they crave,
And linger not on the rivulet’s wave.
Hasten, 0 Summer Winds, sighing above,
Tell her this night shall she meet her love!
The balmy breezes floated away,
And the roses wept that they would not stay.

Around the hill the Summer Winds sped,
Whirling and eddying overhead;
Waving the moss on the cottage eaves,
Rustling the feathery locust-leaves,
Brushing the dew-drops, glimmering yet
On the odorous blooms of the mignonnette,
Till tli~y reached a garden, kept with care,
And found a beautiful maiden there,
Alone in an arbor, where misty lines
Of sunshine fell through the tangled vines.
Then the balmy breezes sought her ear,
And the words they whispered were low but clear.

They lifted the tresses of gold and brown
That over her white neck floated down;
They said, in a musical, breezy voice,
“Thy lover is coming, Sweet Child, rejoice!
When Hesperus’ light in the west grows dim
Thy lover will seek thee; be ready for him !“
The maiden heard, and a rosy glow
Flushed up to her cheek from her heart below,
And the Summer Winds caught, as they circled by,
1-Jer perfumed breath in a gentle sigh.
Then the balmy breezes frolicked away,
And soon in the rose-leaves nestled they.

Last updated September 17, 2022