1826
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

The Sweet Brier.

Connecticut Mirror (29 May 1826).

John G. C. Brainard


Two Spenserians signed "X" on an emblem of humility: "You love your flowers and plants, and will you hate | The little four leav'd rose that I love best, | That freshest will awake, and sweetest go to rest?"

George and Evert Duyckinck: Brainard "was a small man, and sensitive on that score. His friends noticed the fine expression of his countenance when animated. He was negligent of his dress and somewhat abstracted. He wrote rapidly, and was ready in conversation, with playful repartee" Enyclopedia of American Literature (1856; 1876) 1:967.



Our sweet autumnal western-scented wind
Robs of its odours none so sweet a flower,
In all the blooming waste it left behind,
As that the sweet brier yields it; and the shower
Wets not a rose that buds in beauty's bower
One half so lovely, — yet it grows along
The poor girl's path way — by the poor man's door.
Such are the simple folks it dwells among:
And humble as the bud, so humble be the song.

I love it, for it takes its untouch'd stand
Not in the vase that sculptors decorate—
Its sweetness all is of my native land,
And e'en its fragrant leaf has not its mate
Among the perfumes which the rich and great
Buy from the odours of the spicy east.
You love your flowers and plants — and will you hate
The little four leav'd rose that I love best,
That freshest will awake, and sweetest go to rest?

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