I LOVE it, yet I hardly can tell why —
by Christopher Pearse Cranch
My studio with its window to the sky,
Far up above the noises of the street,
The rumbling carts, the ceaseless tramp of feet;
A privacy secure from idle crowds,
And public only to the flying clouds.
No shadowed corners round about me hide.
Clear-lighted stand its walls on every side,
Each sketch and picture showing at its best.
A room for cheery work that needs no rest.
Only too short these days of autumn seem,
Where labor is but joy and peace supreme;
Where fields and woods, towns, skies, and winding rills
Still haunt the memory as the canvas fills.
And while the painter plies his earnest task,
He seems as in some vision-land to bask;
And all that fed his eye and fired his soul
When in the golden summer days lie stole
Their forms and colors, now lived o'er again,
Runs like a strain of music through his brain.
O joyous tasks of art! without your spell
Life were a dull and dreary cloister-cell,
All nature darkened and all beauty dim.
But ye fill up its chalice to the brim
With draughts as sweet as ever yet, I ween,
Flowed in the poets' sparkling Hippocrene.