The Optimist

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by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

   The fields were bleak and sodden.
      Not a wing
   Or note enlivened the depressing wood;
   A soiled and sullen, stubborn snowdrift stood
   Beside the roadway. Winds came muttering
   Of storms to be, and brought the chilly sting
      Of icebergs in their breath. Stalled cattle mooed
      Forth plaintive pleadings for the earth’s green food.
   No gleam, no hint of hope in anything.

   The sky was blank and ashen, like the face
      Of some poor wretch who drains life’s cup too fast
   Yet, swaying to and fro, as if to fling
   About chilled Nature its lithe arms of grace,
      Smiling with promise in the wintry blast,
   The optimistic Willow spoke of spring.

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

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