It is a sultry day; the sun has drunk
The dew that lay upon the morning grass;
There is no rustling in the lofty elm
That canopies my dwelling, and its shade
Scarce cools me. All is silent, save the faint
And interrupted murmur of the bee,
Settling on the sick flowers, and then again
Instantly on the wing.
-William Cullen Bryant, 1824
My son pulled the book that contains this poem from in a bookcase in our family room. I think he was intrigued by its peeling leather cover. It's from the 1901 edition of the Handy Dictionary of Poetical Quotations, which was owned by my great grandmother's sister, Helen, who wrote her name and date in the front in 1907, when she was 12 years old. I had a good time browsing the entries for different topics last night (heavy on Shakespeare), and wondering if Helen or my great grandmother Louise marked the entries for Death and Tomorrow.