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Happy he whom neither wealth nor fashion, Nor the march of the encroaching city, - Drives an exile

From the hearth of his ancestral homestead.

We may build more splendid habitations,
Fill our rooms with paintings and with sculp-
But we cannot

Buy with gold the old associations!

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THIs song of mine Is a Song of the Vine, To be sung by the glowing embers Of wayside inns, When the rain begins

To darken the drear Novembers.

It is not a song
Of the Scuppernong,
From warm Carolinian valleys,
Nor the Isabel
And the Muscadel
That bask in our garden alleys.

Nor the red Mustang,
Whose clusters hang
O'er the waves of the Colorado,
And the fiery flood
Of whose purple blood
Has a dash of Spanish bravado.

For richest and best
Is the wine of the West,
That grows by the Beautiful River;
Whose sweet perfume
Fills all the room

With a benison on the giver.

And as hollow trees
Are the haunts of bees,

For ever going and coming;
So this crystal hive
Is all alive

With a swarming and buzzing and humming.

Very good in its way
Is the Verzenay,
Or the Sillery soft and creamy;
But Catawba wine
Has a taste more divine,

More dulcet, delicious, and dreamy.

There grows no vine
By the haunted Rhine,
By Danube or Guadalquivir,
Nor on island or cape,
That bears such a grape
As grows by the Beautiful River.

Drugged is their juice For foreign use, When shipped o'er the reeling Atlantic, To rack our brains With the fever pains, That have driven the Old World frantic.

To the sewers and sinks
With all such drinks,
And after them tumble the mixer;
For a poison malign
Is such Borgia wine,
Or at best but a Devil’s Elixir.

While pure as a spring Is the wine I sing, And to praise it, one needs but name it; For Catawba wine Has need of no sign,

No tavern-bush to proclaim it.

And this Song of the Vine, This greeting of mine, The winds and the birds shall deliver To the Queen of the West, In her garlands dressed, On the banks of the Beautiful River.

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