Opening Leaves

Dedication to the Honourable The Marchioness of Tavistock

Georgiana Russell

Lady Georgiana, Duchess of Bedford, 2nd wife of the 6th Duke of Bedford

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When Spring, as the queen of the seasons renown’d,

Through nature her beauty displays,

The vallies and woodlands with verdure are crown’d,

And echo with carols of praise.

-o-

While spangled with flowers are mountain and plain,

And the meadows new beauties assume;

Mid the splendid display of her beautiful train,

The violet’s permitted to bloom.

-o-

Content while it blows in its sheltered abode,

It seems as if anxious to please;

And grateful for favours benignly bestow’d,

It sheds a perfume on the breeze.

-o-

Thus humble and grateful my thanks have I penn’d,

Like the violet a tribute I pay,

And hope that Your Ladyship will condescend

T’ accept it as Gratitude’s lay.

-o-

How distant the thought, when at morn’s twilight hours

My fancy her theme would pursue,

That the wild strains I sang to the plants and the flowers,

Would ever be noticed by you!

-o-

The kindness which you have conferr’d upon me,

May Heaven in its justice requite!

Its goodness, combined with its own, e’er shall be

Remember’d with grateful delight.

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Reproduced as written in the 1831 original copy.

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