'Whirlwind, Whirlwind! whither art thou hieing,
Snapping off the flowers young and fair;
Setting all the chaff and the withered leaves to flying;
Tossing up the dust in the air?'
'I,' said the whirlwind, 'cannot stop for talking;
Give me up your cap, my little man,
And the polished stick, that you will not need for walking,
While you run to catch them, if you can!
'Yonder pretty maiden—none has time to tell her
That I'm coming, ere I shall be there.
I will twirl her zephyr, snatch her light umbrella,
Seize her hat, and brush her glossy hair!'
On went the whirlwind, showing many capers,
One would hardly deem it meet to tell;
Dusting priest and lawyer, flirting gown and papers,
Discomposing matron, beau, and belle.
Whisk! from behind came the long and sweeping feather,
Round the head of old Chanticleer.
Plumed and plumeless bipeds felt the blast together,
In a way they would not like to hear.
Snug in an arbor sat a scholar, musing
Calmly o'er the philosophic page.
'Flap!' went the leaves of the volume he was using,
Cutting short the lecture of the sage.
'Hey!' said the book-worm, 'this, I think, is taking
Rather too much liberty with me.
Yet, I'll not resent it; for I'm bent on making
Use of every thing I hear and see.
'Many, I know, will not their anger stifle,
When as little cause as this they find
To let it kindle up; but minding every trifle
Is profitless, as quarrels with the wind!
'Forth to his business, when the whirlwind sallies,
He is all alive to get it done.
He on his pathway never lags nor dallies,
But is always up and on the run.
'Though ever whirling, never growing dizzy;
Motion gives him buoyancy and power.
All who have known him, own that he is busy,
Doing much in half a fleeting hour.
'O, there is nothing, when our work's before us,
Like despatch; for while our time is brief,
Some sweeping blast may suddenly come o'er us,
Lose our place, and turn another leaf!
'Whirlwind, Whirlwind, though you're but a flurry,
And so odd the business you pursue,
Though you come on, and are off in such a hurry,
I have caught a hint, and now, adieu.'