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[361] The grass was green on Rial-side,
     The early birds at will
Waked up the violet in its dell,
     The wind-flower on its hill.

“Where go you, in your Sunday coat,
     Son Andrew, tell me, pray.”
“For striped perch in Wenham Lake
     I go to fish to-day.”

“Unharmed of thee in Wenham Lake
     The mottled perch shall be:
A blue-eyed witch sits on the bank
     And weaves her net for thee.

She weaves her golden hair; she sings
     Her spell-song low and faint;
The wickedest witch in Salem jail
     Is to that girl a saint. “

“Nay, mother, hold thy cruel tongue;
     God knows,” the young man cried,
“He never made a whiter soul
     Than hers by Wenham side.

She tends her mother sick and blind,
     And every want supplies;
To her above the blessed Book
     She lends her soft blue eyes.

Her voice is glad with holy songs,
Her lips are sweet with prayer;
     Go where you will, in ten miles round
Is none more good and fair. “

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