(30 January 1782 - 20 December 1866 / Colchester, England)

The Gaudy Flower

WHY does my Anna toss her head,
And look so scornfully around,
As if she scarcely deign'd to tread
Upon the daisy-dappled ground?

Does fancied beauty fire thine eye,
The brilliant tint, the satin skin?
Does the loved glass, in passing by,
Reflect a graceful form and thin?

Alas! that form, and brilliant fire,
Will never win beholder's love;
It may, indeed, make fools admire,
But ne'er the wise and good can move.

So grows the tulip, gay and bold,
The broadest sunshine its delight;
Like rubies, or like burnish'd gold,
It shows its petals, glossy bright.

But who the gaudy floweret crops,
As if to court a sweet perfume!
Admired it blows, neglected drops,
And sinks unheeded to its doom.

The virtues of the heart may move
Affections of a genial kind;
While beauty fails to stir our love,
And wins the eye, but not the mind.

by Ann Taylor

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