By Charles Sangster



To the woods! to the woods! where the flowers are springing;
Their flight through the forest the wild birds are winging;
Come on, Child of Nature, who lovest the streams
That dance through this land of thy fanciful dreams,
Come, roam through the wildwood, fair creature! with me,


Where the Anthem of Nature is chanted for thee;
Away to the Woods! for fresh beauty we’ll seek,
While the soft summer breezes lend health to thy cheek.
[Page 180]

To the Woods! to the Woods! there is life in the breeze,
That bears on its wings the sweet balm of the trees;


There is health in the depths of the intricate wild
Of the dark, embrowned wilderness; off then, my child:
Gay Nymph of my Fancy! away, sweet! away!
Indulge in thy pastimes, and health shall repay
The toil of thy journey, though far be thy flight;


And return when thy bosom is warmed with delight.

There is health in the odor that comes from the soil
That is furrowed and ploughed by the husbandman’s toil;
There is health on the mountain, and health in the vale,
Where the breeze is not laden with sorrow and wail.


The Indian, who lives as his forefathers did,
In the thick-branching woods, where his wigwam is hid,
Knows nothing of trouble, or sickness, or care,
For the forest supplies him with life-giving air.

To the Woods! to the Woods, then, nor scorn to be seen


With the Child of the Forest, whose dignified mien
Is that of a Chief, unrestricted and free
As the breezes that sweep o’er a mid-summer sea.
Away to the Woods! for the Goddess of Health
Stands inviting us thence, to partake of her wealth;


Away, then, away, where no plodding knave broods
O’er dark schemes of revenge—to the Woods! to the Woods! [Page 181]