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For today’s short post, I present to you a wonderfully illustrated children’s poem from the July 6, 1880 issue of Harper’s Young People. The Wonderful Nest was written by Margaret Eytinge, a prolific writer of children’s short stories and poems who lived from 1832-1916. The first stanza of The Wonderful Nest paints a vivid portrait of a virid summer, and the second stanza describes five children in a hammock being overlooked by five birds in a nest.

Without further ado, I present to you the poem and the illustration that accompanied it in the July 6, 1880 issue of Harper’s Young People.

“The Wonderful Nest” By Margaret Eytinge

Oh! the beautiful bright summer,
Ev'rywhere wild flowers springing;
Honeysuckles to the roses
All day long sweet kisses flinging.
Brooklets sparkling through the meadows,
Humming-birds their glad way winging
With gold-brown bees and butterflies
Where lily-bells are ringing,
      Ringing, ringing—
Where lily-bells are ringing.

Sunbeams on the greensward dancing,
Gentle breezes perfume bringing;
In the cedar-tree five birdies
To their wee nest closely clinging;
Peeping over at the children,
(Five of them too) laughing, singing.
In nest most wonderful to see,
Between the branches swinging,
      Swinging, swinging—
Between the branches swinging.
Illustration of five children in a hammock under a nest with five birds - it appeared in a July 1880 issue of Harper's Young People to accompany "The Wonderful Nest" - a poem by Margaret Eytinge.
Illustration for “The Wonderful Nest” in Harper’s Young People