Midwinter Flowers

I HOLD you to my lips and heart, fair flowers,
Dear, first-begotten children of the sun—
Whose summer lives in winter were begun;
Sweet aliens from the warm June's pleasant bowers,
Mocked at by cruel winds in desolate hours
Through which the sands of winter slowly run:
I touch your tender petals, one by one,
And miss no beauty born of summer showers.

I have a friend who to Life's winter days
Will bring the warmth and splendor of the June;
From him ye come, yet need not speak his praise,
Since on my heart is written well that rune,
And the fine fragrance of his gentle deeds
Reveals his presence 'mong earth's common weeds.
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