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Dragonfly Poems

Table of Contents

  1. The Dragonfly by Arthur Christopher Benson
  2. Blue Dragonfly by Ruby Archer
  3. The Dragon-Fly by Jessie Belle Rittenhouse
  4. The Dragon-Fly by John B. Tabb
  5. Dragon Fly by Hilda Conkling
  6. To a Dragon Fly by Agnes Mary Frances Robinson Duclaux

  1. The Dragonfly

    by Arthur Christopher Benson

    Restless dragonfly, darting, dancing
    Over the ribbons of trailing weed,
    Cease awhile from thy myriad glancing,
    Poised on the curve of the swinging reed;

    Where the lilyleaf smooths her creases,
    Rest like a warrior carved in stone;
    Then when the crisp edge starts, and the breezes
    Ruflle the water, arise, begone!

    Mailed in terror, thy harness gleaming,
    Soldier of summer, a day's desire!
    Lantern eyeballs lustrously dreaming,
    Mirroring woodland, hill, and spire,

    Wondering gaze at the depths that pent thee
    Crawling soft on the dim-lit floor;
    Was it the fire in thy heart that sent thee
    Brave through the ripple, to shine and soar?

    Then when the piled clouds big with thunder
    Smite thee down with a summer's tear,
    Floating, lost in a languid wonder,
    On to the deadly swirl of the weir,

    Dream of the days of thy sunny playing,
    Take no thought of the depths beneath,
    Till the eddies that smile in slaying
    Draw thee down to the deeps of death.

    I too come in the summer weather,
    Dropping down when the winds are low.
    Float like birds of an alien feather,
    Weary of winter and Northern snow,

    Cool depths under us, blue above us,
    Carelessly drifiing side by side,
    Is there a heart to guide us, love us?
    Are we but made to be tossed aside?

    Wherefore question of what befall thee
    Winds that blow from the sunless shore?
    One hath made thee and One shall call thee;
    Dream in the sunlight, and ask no more.

  2. Blue Dragonfly

    by Ruby Archer

    Whither away, thou wingéd flower,
    Instinct with tremulous light and motion?
    Art thou a spirit, born of the hour,
    Adrift on the breezes' lulling ocean?

    Velvety, quivering thing of light,
    The incarnation of summer splendor,
    Is there an aim in thine airy flight,
    A thought that throbs in thy pinions tender?

    Thy wavering wings translucent bear
    An azure dream to a lily sleeping,—
    An instant poised in the fragrant air,
    And lightly into the faint heart peeping.

    Once more away, all pure and soft,
    With prisoned rainbows about thee clinging,
    Flitting and circling, half-vanished aloft,
    Then dipping low to the stream's glad singing.

    O fluttering, gauzy mystery,
    Frail-winged creature, glimmering, fleeing,
    Thou art but a tinted ecstasy,—
    A joy with life and a tireless being.

    Thou hast no purpose to guide thy flight,
    Nor does thy folly demand forgiving.
    Thy wings must beat with thy heart's delight
    In the glorious rapture of merely living!

  3. The Dragon-Fly

    by Jessie Belle Rittenhouse

    The day was set to a beautiful theme
    By the blue of a dragon-fly
    That poised with his airy wings agleam
    On a flower, as I passed by.

    So frail and so lovely—a touch would destroy;
    He seemed but a fancy, a whim;
    Yet this gossamer thing is a breath of God's joy,
    And Life is made perfect in him!

  4. The Dragon-Fly

    by John B. Tabb

    "Is skimming o'er a stagnant pool
    Your only occupation?"
    "Ah, no: 'tis at this Summer School
    I get my education."

  5. Dragon Fly

    by Hilda Conkling

    You jerk, against the sun,
    You twist your diamond wires and greengold scales,
    You tilt your body . . . head down . . .
    You quiver . . .
    Are you angry or only excited?
    I should think the ferns might be excited
    Feeling you there:
    And you never mention the reasons
    For your coming.
    Sure of your wings
    You have time in the air for thinking:
    You poise and are content.
    But only lizards among old stones
    Can find as you find the unexpected turning:
    You say It is time to go!
    And you have gone.

  6. To a Dragon Fly

    by Agnes Mary Frances Robinson Duclaux

    You hail from Dream-land, Dragon-fly?
    A stranger hither? so am I,
    And (sooth to say) I wonder why
    We either of us came,
    Are you (that shine so bright i' the air)
    King Oberon's state-messenger?
    Come tell me how my old friends fare,
    Is Dream-land still the same?

    Who won the latest tourney fight,
    King Arthur, or the Red-Cross Knight,
    Or he who bore away the bright
    Renown'd Mambrino's Casque?
    Is Caliban King's councillor yet?
    Cross Mentor jester still and pet?
    Is Suckling out of love and debt?
    Has Spenser done his task?

    Say, have they settled over there,
    Which is the loveliest Guinevere,
    Or Gloriana or the fair
    Young Queen of Oberon's Court?
    And does Titania torment still
    Mike Drayton and sweet-throated Will?
    In sooth of her amours 'twas ill
    To make such merry sport.

    Ah, I have been too long away!
    No doubt I shall return some day,
    But now I'm lost in love and may
    Not leave my Lady's sight.
    Mine is, (of course), the happier lot,
    Yet—tell them I forget them not,
    My pretty gay compatriot,
    When you go home to-night.

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