Wild Honey Suckle

An Electronic Edition · Philip Freneau (1752-1832)

Original Source: Philip Freneau, "The Wild Honey Suckle." In . Edited by Percy H. Boynton. New York: C. Scribner's Sons, 1918.

Copyright 2002. Thist text is freely available provided the text is distributed with the header information provided

Full Colophon Information



Fair flower, that dost so comely grow,1.
Hid in this silent, dull retreat, 
Untouched thy honied blossoms blow,3.
Unseen thy little branches greet: 
No roving foot shall crush thee here, 
No busy hand provoke a tear. 

By Nature’s self in white arrayed,1.
She bade thee shun the vulgar eye, 
And planted here the guardian shade,3.
And sent soft waters murmuring by; 
Thus quietly thy summer goes, 
Thy days declining to repose, 

Smit with those charms, that must decay,1.
I grieve to see your future doom; 
They died–nor were those flowers more gay,3.
The flowers that did in Eden bloom; 
Unpitying frosts, and Autumn’s power
Shall leave no vestige of this flower. 

From morning suns and evening dews1.
At first thy little being came: 
If nothing once, you nothing lose,3.
For when you die you are the same; 
The space between, is but an hour,  
The frail duration of a flower.  


Full Colophon Information

Genre: Poetry
Subjects: Early National Society and Life
Period: 1750-1800
Location: British America
Format: verse

The text of this document of originally published in 1786.

The text of the present edition was prepared from and proofed against Philip Freneau, "The Wild Honey Suckle," in American Poetry. Edited by Percy H. Boynton (New York: C. Scribner's Sons, 1918). All preliminaries and notes have been omitted except those for which the author is responsible. All editorial notes have been omitted except those that indicate significant textual variations. Line and paragraph numbers contained in the source text have been retained. In cases where the source text displays no numbers, numbers are automatically generated. In the header, personal names have been regularized according to the Library of Congress authority files as "Last Name, First Name" for the REG attribute and "First Name Last Name" for the element value. Names have not been regularized in the body of the text.