I watched a rosebud very long Brought on by dew and sun and shower, Waiting to see the perfect flower: Then, when I thought it should be strong, It opened at the matin hour And fell at evensong.
I watched a nest from day to day, A green nest full of pleasant shade, Wherein three speckled eggs were laid: But when they should have hatched in May, The two old birds had grown afraid Or tired, and flew away.
Then in my wrath I broke the bough That I had tended so with care, Hoping its scent should fill the air; I crushed the eggs, not heeding how Their ancient promise had been fair: I would have vengeance now.
But the dead branch spoke from the sod, And the eggs answered me again: Because we failed dost thou complain? Is thy wrath just? And what if God, Who waiteth for thy fruits in vain, Should also take the rod?