The Singing Garden

The Yellow-tailed Thornbill

C.J. Dennis

I’M a fussy little fellow
In my kilt of glowing yellow;
    As about the garden ways I bow and bend,
Many a melody I bring to you
In the soft, gay songs I sing to you
    With a cheery little grace note at the end—
        “Chip, chip.”
    Oh, I never miss that grace-note at the end.

Summer into autumn passes,
And among the seeding grasses,
    ’Mid the midges, goodly provender I gain.
Little for your presence caring,
Confident and greatly daring,
    I will charm you with a sudden, sweet refrain—
        “Chip, chip.”
    Oh, a very soft, yet valiant refrain.

When the time has come for nesting,
Our sagacity attesting,
    We erect a neat, twin-chambered bow’r of love;
Mother in the nursery sleeping
With the babes, while sentry keeping,
    Father has his parlour-bedroom up above—
        “Chip, chip.”
    Oh, it’s cosier—and quieter above.

In my kilt of golden yellow
I’m a friendly little fellow,
    And my spangled sable crown I proudly bear.
Tho’ my way be meek and lowly,
I can capture, win you wholly
    If you’ll listen to this cheerful little air—
        “Chip, chip.”
    Oh, I’ll charm you with my cheerful little air.

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