A Celebration of Women Writers

"An Enigma." by Jane Taylor (1783-1824)
Publication: The Writings of Jane Taylor, In Five Volumes by Jane Taylor. Volume I, Memoirs and Poetical Remains.. Edited by Isaac Taylor, Jr., of Stanford Rivers. Boston: Perkins & Marvin, 1832. pp. 306-307.

Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom


WHERE nature wears her wildest dress,
  In colors all her own,
Where howling winds rage merciless,
  I spread my stormy throne:
And loud and angry, wild and rude,
I reign in dreary solitude.

When summer skies are clear to view,
  And sunbeams dance around,
I wear a robe of purest blue,
  With silvery fringes bound;
And blush and sparkle, smile and play,
Like beauty on a festal day.

Sweet evening sets her earliest star
  Upon my peaceful breast,
And I restore the gem afar,

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  To deck Aurora's vest;
The host of heaven in bright array,
To me, by turns, their homage pay.

The silent cave, the sparkling grot,
  In unknown realms, I ween,
Where foot of mortal enters not,
  Nor vulture's eye hath seen–
'T is there I love to steal along,
And pour my everlasting song.

And there with pearl and amber crowned,
  I hold my gentler court,
While freshest breezes play around,
  And merry mermaids sport;
And thousand graceful Naiads stand,
With streaming urns in either hand.


Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom