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Alfred H. Miles, ed. The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century. 1907.

By Rondeaux. I. “Sweet, soft and low”; or The Willow Warbler

Richard Wilton (1827–1903)

SWEET, soft, and low, in wood and lane

The Willow Warbler weaves its chain

Of melody—a plaintive song

That seems to breathe of ancient wrong

And dimly-recollected pain.

Its melting cadences retain

Your ear again and yet again,

Through notes more clear and blithe and strong—

Sweet, soft, and low.

Thus after Life’s most happy strain

A minor music will remain,

Recurring oft and lingering long,

And heard the gayest scenes among;

Of lost joys hinting not in vain—

Sweet, soft, and low.