Unknown to the public eye
Of a busy, hurrying town,
Where a hedge goes rambling by,
Is an old brown lodge—oh, brown
With the trees' own swarthy hue—
The brown of the unshorn bark
Deepened with sun and dew;
And the wandering rooms within,
Curtained and coy and dark,
Have a winsome, wayward air,
A challenging—"Find me out!"
A happy wilful turn
That will charm you unaware.
The vines are all about,
Over the rough old walls
That draw them in and in
Where the cobweb spinning falls,
Through every crevice and knot;
And they wind their slender fingers
Lithely, lovingly 'round,
'Till the very sunlight lingers;
And they lean and tremble and sway
And cling and ripple and play
In a maze of tender green
With a glimpse of brown between.
Ah—the feeling you have in there,
Safe in the still retreat,
All hid from the noise and glare—
Sweet as a burst of bloom
Where you knew not any grew,
Sweet as the honey-dew
In the heart of a thistle's gloom,
Sweet with the full surprise
Of all hidden, quick delight.
O dear old bark-brown lodge,
Where vines and perfumes play,—
You fill my eyes by day,
My dreams by night.