University of Virginia Library



An owl in his wonted day-long retirement ruffled by the meadow-lark curvetting and caroling in the morning-sun high over the pastures and woods, comments upon that rollicker, and in so doing lets out the meditation engrossing him when thus molested. But the weightiness of the wisdom ill agrees with its somewhat trilling expression; an incongruity attributable doubtless to the contagious influence of the reprehended malapert's overruling song.

So frolic, so flighty,
Leaving wisdom behind,
Lark, little you ween
Of the progress of mind.


While fantastic you're winging,
Up-curving and singing,
A skylarking dot in the sun;
Under eaves here in wood
My wits am I giving
To this latest theme:
Life blinks at strong light,
Life wanders in night like a dream—
Is then life worth living?