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The Sabbath of the Year

Mother Nature has put to sleep
All her little ones snug and warm.
Old Nurse Earth will the children keep
Tucked carefully out of the storm;
Rocked a little by winter wind,
Washed by rain that were always kind,
They were ready for anything -
Even to sleep till awoke by Spring.

Nature, the Mother, has told the trees
That this is the time for the Sabbath rest;
The green grass whispers it in the breeze,
And in all the fields it is manifest.
And, ah! the long sleep under the snow,
And the plants too sleepy to stretch and grow,
And the cosy coverlet over all,
Till Match sun shines and throstles call.

Low are the psalms of the woodland aisles,
Soft are the airs which are played today;
The skies are tender with quiet smiles,
But the glow comes with the flowers of May,
And all the works of the summer days,
Glad with beauty and sweet with praise.
Will be done by Earth at her very best…
Because of the calm of this Sabbath rest.


Marianne Farningham


Friendly Autumn

The Spring is like a young maid
That does not know her mind,
The Summer is a tyrant
Of most ungracious kind;
The Autumn is an old friend
That pleases all he can,
And brings the bearded barley
To glad heart of man.

CHRISTINA ROSSETTI




The bluebell wood

I came upon them quite by the chance,
A lovely sight to see.
They made one think of Heaven
And all good things to be.

And as far as the eye could see
They stood up, tall and straight,
Like the sentry be the Palace gate.
Bluer than the sky they were,
Bluer than the sea.
I knew someone had planted them
Especially all for me.

And in my memory I still recall
The day I chanced that way,
And saw them in their glory
On that warm and sunny day.

Mrs M Day, Southampton, Hants

Summer days

The lovely summer days go by
As swiftly as the swallows fly.
Soft breezes blow o'er hills and dales,
Through ripening fields of corn and maize,
Hedgerows are laced with elder blooms,
And sunlight dances through the coombs.

As evening falls, the sun sinks low,
Bathing distant hills in rosy glow.
The day is done, the country's sleep,
And all around the night sounds creep.
Sweet woodbine clings upon the air
And fills the soul with perfume rare.

Now bats fly by and hedgehog stir,
Stumbling from their leafy lair.
The badger walks in woodland sett,
But the dormouse sleeps on as yet.
Yes, another summer day gone by,
As swiftly as the swallows fly.

Mrs Pauline O'Keefe, Parbold, Lancs



Seaside memories

Candy floss and lollies,
Burgers, chips and beers,
The sights and sounds of seasides
I remembered through the years.

Sandwiches with sand in,
Ice cream dripping fast,
The sights and sounds of seasides
I remember from my past.

Donkey rides and deckchairs,
Paddling a lot in the sea,
The sights and sounds of seasides
I'll remember with nostalgia

These memories I'll keep with me
Until I'm old and grey.
The sights and sounds of seasides
I'll remember every day.

Mrs Chris Bishop, Halstead, Essex


Autumn hues

Cold misty morning, sun breaking through
Gossamer webs, sparkling with dew.
High on the heat, colours around,
Golden the bracken, leaves red and brown.

Bright jewel colours, mist over the mill;
Fruit for the harvest in the church of the hill.
The altar bedecked with flowers, hips and wheat;
Autumn there, nostalgic and sweet.

We sings our thanks with hymns of praise,
And pray for happy, healthy days.

Mrs Sybil Stimpson, Penkridge, Staffs



Woman to man

A good woman inspires the man,
A brilliant woman interests him,
A beautiful woman fascinates him,
And a sympathetic woman gets him.





The fallow deer
One without looks tonight
Through the curtain-chink
From the sheet of glistening white;
One without looks tonight
As we sit and think
By the fender-brink

We do not discern those eyes
Watching in the snow;
Lit by lamp of rosy dyes
We do not discern those eyes
Wondering, aglow,
Fourfooted, tiptoe

THOMAS HARDY


By the fireside

Dancing flames, flickering bright,
Cosy and warm, lighting the night.
Purring, content, the cat's on my lap,
Ready for his evening nap.

Slippered feet, red wine at hand,
By the fireside, I feeling grand.
Twinkling stars in the night sky,
Cold whistling wind, whipping by.

Be content with simple things,
And see what pleasure your life brings.

Susan Bean, Epson Downs, Surrey


Like a Song
Life, they say, is like a song
At times I wonder whether,
It's a combination of "Blue Skies"
Along with "Stormy Weather".
The anthem of the future
Will be worth of a hearing, when,
Mankind confirms a chorus:
"Happy days are here again"!

John Robertson






A Song of Sussex
I often used to wander
O'er the South Downs as a boy,
The springy turf beneath my feet
To me was endless joy.
I've watched the sunlight sparkle
Upon the distant sea,
And used think that all these joys
Were put there just for me,

Plover in their hundreds
I've watched upon the wing,
And high in blue of Summer
I've heard the skylark sing.
The shepherd and his bleating flock
Upon the hillside green,
And in the fertile valleys
The lowing herds I've seen.

Flowers, a brilliant carpet,
And saddest heart would cheer,
And bees among the blossoms
Was music to my ear.
The river flowing slowly
Upon its winding way,
Past tall winging rushes
Where vole and moorhen play.

I've watched the farmer plough and sow
And reap golden corn,
And with the cool of Autumn
I've heard a huntsman's horn,
If ever I should wander
Through land across the sea…
The rolling hill of Sussex
Will still be home to me.

F.G. Trussler


We will remember
They made the final sacrifice
On land, in air, at sea
No half measure would suffice
On the altar of the free.

From highland, downland, moors, dales
They hurried without pause,
From shires, hamlets, town and vales,
To serve in freedom's cause.

Field, desert, jungle when all decayed,
War's dread death-rattle hushed.
In unmarked graves so many laid,
Before enemy was crushed.

These tiny isles, unconquered long,
valiant when all seems lost,
What debt we owe the gallant throng of men
Who did not count the cost then.


The heart of a Friend

In the toil of the busy day
You find the hand of a friend,
Oh, hold it fast for its grip will last
And keep his faith to the end.
For the heart of a friend is a pledge from the heart,
And the heart is the well-spring of love,
love if the truth that makes all things glad,
In sunshine from heaven above.

A Valentine

If I could paint a picture of
The love I feel for you,
I fill it with a blackbird's song,
A song so sweet and true.
I'd paint the magic of night skies
When bright stars wink and shine,
The wonder of spider's web, so strong and yet so fine;
The miracle of life itself,
The fragrance of a flower, sweet thoughts of you that fill my mind
With every passing hour.
And I would paint the pureness of
A tiny flake of snow.
A snowflakes melts, but does my love?
Oh no, my darling, no,
My love for you is strong and true,
Believe me when I say,
I love you, and I always will,
For ever and a day.

Mrs. Kay Spurr, Kirkby Stephen, Cumbria



A dream of love
A dream, a nothing,
A holiday romance.
Thistledown offer,
Young single glance.

Was I foolish?
Did I go too far,
Chasing my dream
To catch a star?

A dream of nothing:
A smile, a word, a kiss.
I thought you, too,
Shared my secret bliss.

Autumn winds now blow
My summer dream away.
But shall I ever forget
That one special day?

Miss Teresa Webster, Falmouth, Cornwall


These hands of mine
Sometimes I wish for smaller hands,
Smooth and soft and pale.
Hands to flatter rings and things,
With never a ragged nail.

The kind of hands a man will take
And cherish in his own,
To make him feel protective
And keep me from being alone.

Such thoughts make me a traitor.
What foolishness is this?
For don't these hands of mine deserve
High praise for their true service?

Hard work through my life
Had left them gnarled and worn,
So I will treat them with respect
And never more will I scorn!

Mrs Liz Richards, Malvern, Worcs





The Rights of Women
The rights of women, what they are?
The rights to labour, love and pray,
The rights to weep with whose who weep,
The rights to wake when others sleep,
The rights to dry the falling fear,
The rights to quell the rising fear,
The rights to soothe the brow of care,
And whisper comfort in despair,
The right to watch the failing breath,
And soothe and cheer the bed of death,
The rights when early hopes all fail,
To point to that within the veil,
The rights the wanderers to reclaim,
And lure the lost from path of shame,
The rights to comfort and bless,
The widow and the fatherless,
The rights the little ones to guide,
In simple faith to Him who died,
With earnest love and gentle praise,
To bless and cheer their youthful days,
The right the intellect to train,
And guide the soul to noble aim,
Teach it to rise above earth toys,
And win its way to heavenly joys,
The right to live for those we love,
The right to die that love to prove,
The right to brighten earthly homes,
With pleasant smiles and gentle tones,
Are these thy right? Then use them well,
The holy influence none can tell,
If these are thine why ask for more?
Thou hast enough to answer for.
Are these thy right? Then murmur not
That Women's Mission is thy lot,
Accept the talents God has given
Life's duty done, thy rest is heaven,

This verse had been written in 1900, then there was real resistance to the women's suffrage movement .