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- Alphabetized by author
- Is it so small a thing
To have enjoy'd the sun,
To have lived light in the spring,
To have loved, to have thought, to have done;
To have advanc'd true friends, and beat down baffling foes?
- Matthew Arnold, "Empedocles on Etna" (1852).
- What does winter or autumn or spring or summer know of memory. They know nothing of memory. They know that seasons pass and return. They know that they are seasons. That they are time. And they know how to affirm themselves. And they know how to impose themselves. And they know how to maintain themselves, What does autumn know of summer. What sorrows do seasons have. None hate. None love. They just pass.
- Giannina Braschi, "Pastoral or the Inquisition of Memories" from Empire of Dreams (1994).
- The year's at the spring,
And day's at the morn;
Morning's at seven;
The hill-side's dew-pearl'd;
The lark's on the wing;
The snail's on the thorn;
God's in His heaven—
All's right with the world!
- Robert Browning, Pippa's Song in Pippa Passes (1841).
- The highroad was dry, the lovely April sun was shining warmly, but in the ditches and forest snow still lay on the ground. Harsh, dark, interminable winter was only just receding, and spring was suddenly here, but for Marya Vasilyevna, who sat now in the cart, there was nothing new or engaging in the warmth, or in the languid ethereal woods warming in the breath of spring, or in the black flocks flying off to the fields over giant puddles resembling lakes, or in the strange fathomless sky, into which, it seemed, one could escape with such pleasure.
- Listen, can you hear it? Spring's sweet cantata. The strains of grass pushing through the snow. The song of buds swelling on the vine. The tender timpani of a baby robin's heart. Spring.
- And we will know, we will pursue to know Jehovah. Like dawn, his going forth is firmly established. And he will come in like a pouring rain to us; like a spring rain that saturates [the] earth.
- Nothing is so beautiful as Spring—
When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;
Thrush's eggs look little low heavens, and thrush
Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring
The ear, it strikes like lightning to hear him sing.
- Gerard Manley Hopkins, "Spring".
- You sons of Zion, be joyful and rejoice in Jehovah your God; for he will give you the autumn rain in the right amount, and he will send upon you a downpour, the autumn rain and the spring rain, as before. The threshing floors will be full of pure grain, and the presses will overflow with new wine and oil. And I will make compensation to you for the years that the swarming locust, the unwinged locust, the voracious locust, and the devouring locust have eaten, my great army that I sent among you.
- ...the sun had come back over the Forest, bringing with it the scent of May, and all the streams of the Forest were tinkling happily to find themselves their own pretty shape again, and the little pools lay dreaming of the life they had seen and the big things they had done, and in the warmth and quiet of the Forest the cuckoo was trying over his voice carefully and listening to see if he liked it, and wood-pigeons were complaining gently to themselves in their lazy comfortable way that it was the other fellow's fault, but it didn't matter very much...
- Spring, the sweet Spring, is the year's pleasant king
- Thomas Nashe, Summer's Last Will and Testament (1600), lines 161–164.
- The flowers anew returning seasons bring,
But beauty faded has no second spring.
- Ambrose Philips, Pastoral.
- O, how this spring of love resembleth The uncertain glory of an April day!
- William Shakespeare, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Act 1 scene 3.
- O Spring, of hope and love and youth and gladness
Wind-wingèd emblem! brightest, best and fairest!
Whence comest thou, when, with dark Winter's sadness
The tears that fade in sunny smiles thou sharest?
Sister of joy! thou art the child who wearest
Thy mother's dying smile, tender and sweet;
Thy mother Autumn, for whose grave thou bearest
Fresh flowers, and beams like flowers, with gentle feet,
Disturbing not the leaves which are her winding sheet.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Revolt of Islam (1817), Canto Ninth, XXII.
- If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?
- Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ode to the West Wind.
- Dip down upon the northern shore,
O sweet new year, delaying long;
Thou doest expectant nature wrong,
Delaying long; delay no more.
- In the Spring a livelier iris changes on the burnish'd dove;
In the Spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.
- The boyhood of the year.
- Alfred Tennyson, Sir Launcelot and Queen Guinevere, Stanza 3.
- Come, gentle Spring; ethereal Mildness, come!
- James Thomson, The Seasons, Spring (1728), line 1.
- The Clouds consign their treasures to the fields,
And, softly shaking on the dimpled pool,
Prelusive drops, let all their moisture flow
In large effusion, o'er the freshen'd world.
- James Thomson, The Seasons, Spring (1728), line 173.
- Fair-handed Spring unbosoms every grace:
Throws out the snowdrop and the crocus first.
- James Thomson, The Seasons, Spring (1728), line 527.
- All the efforts of several hundred thousand people, crowded in a small space, to disfigure the land on which they lived; all the stone they covered it with to keep it barren; how so diligently every sprouting blade of grass was removed; all the smoke of coal and naphtha; all the cutting down of trees and driving off of cattle could not shut out the spring, even from the city. The sun was shedding its light; the grass, revivified, was blooming forth, where it was left uncut, not only on the greenswards of the boulevard, but between the flag-stones, and the birches, poplars and wild-berry trees were unfolding their viscous leaves; the limes were unfolding their buds; the daws, sparrows and pigeons were joyfully making their customary nests, and the flies were buzzing on the sun-warmed walls. Plants, birds, insects and children were equally joyful. Only men—grown-up men—continued cheating and tormenting themselves and each other. People saw nothing holy in this spring morning, in this beauty of God's world—a gift to all living creatures—inclining to peace, good-will and love, but worshiped their own inventions for imposing their will on each other.
- Nunc omnis ager, nunc omnis parturit arbor;
Nunc frondent sylvae, nunc formosissimus annus.
- Through primrose tufts, in that green bower,
The periwinkle trailed its wreaths;
And ’tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.
Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations
- Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 746–748.
- As quickly as the ice vanishes when the Father unlooses the frost fetters and unwounds the icy ropes of the torrent.
- Beowulf, VII.
- Now Spring returns; but not to me returns
The vernal joy my better years have known;
Dim in my breast life's dying taper burns,
And all the joys of life with health have flown.
- Michael Bruce, Elegy, written in Spring.
- Now Nature hangs her mantle green
On every blooming tree,
And spreads her sheets o' daisies white
Out o'er the grassy lea.
- Robert Burns, Lament of Mary Queen of Scots.
- And the spring comes slowly up this way.
- Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Christabel (c. 1797–1801, published 1816), Part I.
- Spring hangs her infant blossoms on the trees,
Rock'd in the cradle of the western breeze.
- William Cowper, Tirocinium, line 43.
- If there comes a little thaw,
Still the air is chill and raw,
Here and there a patch of snow,
Dirtier than the ground below,
Dribbles down a marshy flood;
Ankle-deep you stick in mud
In the meadows while you sing,
"This is Spring."
- C. P. Cranch, A Spring Growl.
- Starred forget-me-nots smile sweetly,
Ring, blue-bells, ring!
Winning eye and heart completely,
Sing, robin, sing!
All among the reeds and rushes,
Where the brook its music hushes,
Bright the caloposon blushes.—
Laugh, O murmuring Spring!
- Sarah F. Davis, Summer Song.
- Daughter of heaven and earth, coy Spring,
With sudden passion languishing,
Teaching barren moors to smile,
Painting pictures mile on mile,
Holds a cup of cowslip wreaths
Whence a smokeless incense breathes.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson, May Day, Stanza 1.
- Eternal Spring, with smiling Verdure here
Warms the mild Air, and crowns the youthful Year.
* * * * * *
The Rose still blushes, and the vi'lets blow.
- Sir Samuel Garth, The Dispensary (1699), Canto IV, line 298.
- Lo! where the rosy bosom'd Hours
Fair Venus' train appear,
Disclose the long-expecting flowers,
And wake the purple year.
- Thomas Gray, Ode on Spring. Compare Homeric Hymn to Aphrodite. (Hymn E.).
- When Spring unlocks the flowers to paint the laughing soil.
- Reginald Heber, Hymn for Seventh Sunday after Trinity.
- The spring's already at the gate
With looks my care beguiling;
The country round appeareth straight
A flower-garden smiling.
- Heinrich Heine, Book of Songs, Catherine, No. 6.
- The beauteous eyes of the spring's fair night
With comfort are downward gazing.
- Heinrich Heine, Book of Songs, New Spring, No. 3.
- I come, I come! ye have called me long,
I come o'er the mountain with light and song:
Ye may trace my step o'er the wakening earth,
By the winds which tell of the violet's birth,
By the primrose-stars in the shadowy grass,
By the green leaves, opening as I pass.
- Felicia Hemans, Voice of Spring.
- Sweet Spring, full of sweet dayes and roses,
A box where sweets compacted lie,
My musick shows ye have your closes,
And all must die.
- George Herbert, The Church, Vertue, Stanza 3.
- For surely in the blind deep-buried roots
Of all men's souls to-day
A secret quiver shoots.
- Richard Hovet, Spring.
- They know who keep a broken tryst,
Till something from the Spring be missed
We have not truly known the Spring.
- Robert Underwood Johnson, The Wistful Days.
- All flowers of Spring are not May's own;
The crocus cannot often kiss her;
The snow-drop, ere she comes, has flown:—
The earliest violets always miss her.
- Lucy Larcom, The Sister Months.
- And softly came the fair young queen
O'er mountain, dale, and dell;
And where her golden light was seen
An emerald shadow fell.
The good-wife oped the window wide,
The good-man spanned his plough;
'Tis time to run, 'tis time to ride,
For Spring is with us now.
- Charles Godfrey Leland, Spring.
- The lovely town was white with apple-blooms,
And the great elms o'erhead
Dark shadows wove on their aerial looms,
Shot through with golden thread.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Hawthorne, Stanza 2.
- Came the Spring with all its splendor,
All its birds and all its blossoms,
All its flowers, and leaves, and grasses.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Song of Hiawatha (1855), Part XXI, line 109.
- Thus came the lovely spring with a rush of blossoms and music,
Flooding the earth with flowers, and the air with melodies vernal.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Tales of a Wayside Inn (1863–1874), Part III. The Theologian's Tale. Elizabeth.
- The holy spirit of the Spring
Is working silently.
- George MacDonald, Songs of the Spring Days, Part II.
- Awake! the morning shines, and the fresh field
Calls us; we lose the prime, to mark how spring
Our tended plants, how blows the citron grove,
What drops the myrrh, and what the balmy reed,
How nature paints her colours, how the bee
Sits on the bloom, extracting liquid sweet.
- On many a green branch swinging,
Little birdlets singing
Warble sweet notes in the air.
There I found.
Green spread the meadow all around.
- Neidhart von Reuental, Spring-Song. Translation in The Minnesinger of Germany.
- Yet Ah, that Spring should vanish with the Rose,
That Youth's sweet-scented manuscript should close!
The Nightingale that in the branches sang
Ah whence and whither flown again, who knows?
- Omar Khayyam, Rubaiyat, FitzGerald's Translation St. 96.
- Gentle Spring!—in sunshine clad,
Well dost thou thy power display!
For Winter maketh the light heart sad,
And thou,—thou makest the sad heart gay.
- Charles d'Orléans, Spring. Longfellow's translation.
- Hark! the hours are softly calling
Bidding Spring arise,
To listen to the rain-drops falling
From the cloudy skies,
To listen to Earth's weary voices,
Louder every day,
Bidding her no longer linger
On her charm'd way;
But hasten to her task of beauty
Scarcely yet begun.
- Adelaide Anne Procter, Spring.
- I wonder if the sap is stirring yet,
If wintry birds are dreaming of a mate,
If frozen snowdrops feel as yet the sun,
And crocus fires are kindling one by one.
- Christina G. Rossetti, The First Spring Day, Stanza 1.
- There is no time like Spring,
When life's alive in everything,
Before new nestlings sing,
Before cleft swallows speed their journey back
Along the trackless track.
- Christina G. Rossetti, Spring, Stanza 3.
- Spring flies, and with it all the train it leads:
And flowers, in fading, leave us but their seeds.
- Friedrich Schiller, Farewell to the Reader.
- I sing the first green leaf upon the bough,
The tiny kindling flame of emerald fire,
The stir amid the roots of reeds, and how
The sap will flush the briar.
- Clinton Scollard, Song in March.
- For, lo! the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land.
- The Song of Solomon, II. 11, 12.
- So forth issew'd the Seasons of the yeare:
First, lusty Spring, all dight in leaves of flowres
That freshly budded and new bloomes did beare,
In which a thousand birds had built their bowres
That sweetly sung to call forth paramours;
And in his hand a javelin he did beare,
And on his head (as fit for warlike stoures)
A guilt, engraven morion he did weare:
That, as some did him love, so others did him feare.
- Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene (1589–1596), Book VII, Canto VII. Legend of Constancie, Stanza 28.
- Now the hedged meads renew
Rustic odor, smiling hue,
And the clean air shines and twinkles as the world goes wheeling through;
And my heart springs up anew,
Bright and confident and true,
And my old love comes to meet me in the dawning and the dew.
- Robert Louis Stevenson, poem written in 1876.
- It is the season now to go
About the country high and low,
Among the lilacs hand in hand,
And two by two in fairyland.
- Robert Louis Stevenson, Underwoods, It is the Season Now to Go.
- O tender time that love thinks long to see,
Sweet foot of Spring that with her footfall sows
Late snow-like flowery leavings of the snows,
Be not too long irresolute to be;
O mother-month, where have they hidden thee?
- Algernon Charles Swinburne, A Vision of Spring in Winter.
- Once more the Heavenly Power
Makes all things new,
And domes the red-plough'd hills
With loving blue;
The blackbirds have their wills,
The throstles too.
- Alfred Tennyson, Early Spring.
- The bee buzz'd up in the heat,
"I am faint for your honey, my sweet."
The flower said, "Take it, my dear,
For now is the Spring of the year.
So come, come!"
And the bee buzz'd down from the heat.
- Alfred Tennyson, The Forester, Act IV, scene 1.
- 'Tis spring-tune on the eastern hills!
Like torrents gush the summer rills;
Through winter's moss and dry dead leaves
The bladed grass revives and lives,
Pushes the mouldering waste away,
And glimpses to the April day.
- John Greenleaf Whittier, Mogg Megone, Part III.
- And all the woods are alive with the murmur and sound of spring,
And the rosebud breaks into pink on the climbing briar,
And the crocus bed is a quivering moon of fire
Girdled round with the belt of an amethyst ring.
- Oscar Wilde, Magdalen Walks.
- The Spring is here—the delicate footed May,
With its slight fingers full of leaves and flowers,
And with it comes a thirst to be away,
In lovelier scenes to pass these sweeter hours.
- Nathaniel Parker Willis, Spring.
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