Invitation To JBC

By Matilda Bethem 1776–1852 Matilda Bethem
Now spring appears, with beauty crowned
And all is light and life around,
Why comes not Jane? When friendship calls,
Why leaves she not Augusta’s walls?
Where cooling zephyrs faintly blow,
Nor spread the cheering, healthful glow
That glides through each awakened vein,
As skimming o’er the spacious plain,
We look around with joyous eye,
And view no boundaries but the sky.

Already April’s reign is o’er,
Her evening tints delight no more;
No more the violet scents the gale,
No more the mist o’erspreads the vale;
The lovely queen of smiles and tears,
Who gave thee birth, no more appears;
But blushing May, with brow serene,
And vestments of a livelier green,
Commands the winged choir to sing,
And with wild notes the meadows ring.

   O come! ere all the train is gone,
No more to hail thy twenty-one;
That age which higher honour shares,
And well become the wreath it wears.
From lassitude and cities flee,
And breathe the air of heaven, with me.

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Poet Matilda Bethem 1776–1852

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Romantic

Subjects Nature, Spring, Friends & Enemies, Relationships

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

Biography

Biographer and portrait painter Matilda Betham was raised in Stonham Aspal in Suffolk, England, the firstborn in a family of 15 children. She learned portrait painting in order to support herself and moved to London when her family was undergoing financial difficulties. Betham showed her work at the Royal Academy and painted portraits of poets George Dyer and Robert Southey. She met Samuel Taylor Coleridge in 1802 when she . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Nature, Spring, Friends & Enemies, Relationships

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Romantic

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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