THE SHIRLEY POPPY FAIRY
We were all of us scarlet, and counted as
When we grew in fields with the corn;
Now, fall from your pepper-pots with the corn;
And lovelier things shall be born!
You shall sleep in the soil, and awaken next
Your buds shall burst open; behold!
Soft-tinted and silken, shall petals appear,
And then into Poppies unfold--
Like daintiest ladies, who dance and are gay,
All frilly and pretty to see!
So I shake out the ripe little seeds, and I say:
"Go, sleep, and awaken like me!"
(A clergyman, who was also a clever gardener, made these
many-coloured poppies out of the wild ones, and named them
after the village where he was the Vicar.)