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About this Poem 

“The Thaw” was first published in Thoreau’s Poems of Nature (Houghton Mifflin & Co., 1895).

The Thaw

I saw the civil sun drying earth’s tears —
Her tears of joy that only faster flowed,

Fain would I stretch me by the highway side,
To thaw and trickle with the melting snow,
That mingled soul and body with the tide,
I too may through the pores of nature flow.

But I alas nor tinkle can nor fume,
One jot to forward the great work of Time,
‘Tis mine to hearken while these ply the loom,
So shall my silence with their music chime.

This poem is in the public domain. 

This poem is in the public domain. 

Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau

Although he thought of himself as a poet, Henry David Thoreau's most defining work was his book, Walden.

by this poet

poem
Whate'er we leave to God, God does, 
And blesses us; 
The work we choose should be our own, 
God leaves alone.
 
If with light head erect I sing, 
Though all the Muses lend their force, 
From my poor love of anything, 
The verse is weak and shallow as its source. 

But if with bended neck I grope 
Listening
poem

Packed in my mind lie all the clothes
   Which outward nature wears,
And in its fashion’s hourly change
    It all things else repairs.

In vain I look for change abroad,
    And can no difference find,
Till some new ray of peace uncalled
    Illumes my inmost mind.

What is

poem

Low-anchored cloud,
Newfoundland air,
Fountain-head and source of rivers,
Dew-cloth, dream-drapery,
And napkin spread by fays;
Drifting meadow of the air,
Where bloom the daisied banks and violets,
And in whose fenny labyrinth
The bittern booms and heron wades;
Spirit of