Before the stout harvesters falleth the grain,
As when the strong stormwind is reaping the plain,
And loiters the boy in the briery lane;
But yonder aslant comes the silvery rain,
Like a long line of spears brightly burnished and tall.
Adown the white highway like calvary feet,
It dashes the dust with its numberless feet.
Like a murmurless school, in their leafy retreat,
The wild birds sit listening the drops round them beat;
And the boy crouches close to the blackberry wall.
The swallows alone take the storm on the wing,
And, taunting the tree-sheltered laborers, sing.
Like pebbles the rain breaks the face of spring,
While a bubble darts up from each widening ring;
And the boy in dismay hears a loud shower fall.
But soon are the harvesters tossing their sheaves;
The robin darts out from his bower of leaves;
The wren peerth forth from the moss-covered eaves;
And the rain-spattered urchin now gladly perceives
That the beautiful bow bendeth over them all.
Well Against A Rainbow
A painting by Karoly I. Marko
About the Author
Thomas Buchanan Read was born in
Chester County Pennsylvania on March 12, 1822.
His life was devoted to the fine arts, and he attained a
high reputation both as an artist and a poet.
He died in New York on May 11, 1872.
Source material taken from McGuffey's Fourth Eclectic Reader
Revised Edition John Wiley and Sons.