The Illustrated London Reading Book eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 275 pages of information about The Illustrated London Reading Book.

[Illustration:  SPRING.]

SUMMER.

[Illustration:  Letter F.]

From bright’ning fields of ether fair disclosed,
Child of the Sun, refulgent Summer comes,
In pride of youth, and felt through nature’s depth: 
He comes attended by the sultry hours,
And ever-fanning breezes on his way;
While from his ardent look the turning Spring
Averts his blushing face, and earth and skies,
All-smiling, to his hot dominion leaves.

* * * * *

Cheer’d by the milder beam, the sprightly youth
Speeds to the well-known pool, whose crystal depth
A sandy bottom shows.  Awhile he stands
Gazing the inverted landscape, half afraid
To meditate the blue profound below;
Then plunges headlong down the circling flood. 
His ebon tresses, and his rosy cheek,
Instant emerge:  and through the obedient wave,
At each short breathing by his lip repell’d,
With arms and legs according well, he makes,
As humour leads, an easy-winding path;
While from his polish’d sides a dewy light
Effuses on the pleased spectators round.

    This is the purest exercise of health. 
    The kind refresher of the Summer heats: 
    Nor, when cold Winter keens the brightening flood,
    Would I, weak-shivering, linger on the brink. 
    Thus life redoubles, and is oft preserved
    By the bold swimmer, in the swift elapse
    Of accident disastrous.

[Illustration:  SUMMER.]

AUTUMN.

[Illustration:  Letter C.]

Crown’d with the sickle and the wheaten sheaf,
While Autumn nodding o’er the yellow plain
Comes jovial on, the Doric reed once more,
Well pleased, I tune.  Whatever the wintry frost
Nitrous prepared, the various-blossom’d Spring
Put in white promised forth, and Summer suns
Concocted strong, rush boundless now to view,
Full, perfect all, and swell my glorious theme.

* * * * *

Hence from the busy, joy-resounding fields
In cheerful error let us tread the maze
Of Autumn, unconfined; and taste, revived,
The breath of orchard big with bending fruit. 
Obedient to the breeze and beating ray,
From the deep-loaded bough a mellow shower
Incessant melts away.  The juicy pear
Lies in a soft profusion scatter’d round. 
A various sweetness swells the gentle race,
By Nature’s all-refining hand prepared;
Of tempered sun, and water, earth, and air,
In ever-changing composition mix’d. 
Such, falling frequent through the chiller night,
The fragrant stores, the wide projected heaps
Of apples, which the lusty-handed year,
Innumerous, o’er the blushing orchard shakes.

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The Illustrated London Reading Book from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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