Rich was the harvest he vow'd to reap,
When he planted his germ below;
"Love will give sheaves of red gold to keep,
And its fruit will be sweet, I know."
But his golden sheaves
Are the wrinkled leaves
By the gusty autumn borne;
And his fruit, the red barries of briony
That cling round a wither'd thorn. "Roses will throw me their blooms, " she said,
"When winter is white on the tree;
Love will bring clusters when leaves are dead--
The vine's purple clusters to me."
But her rose-tree stands
With roseless hands,
In the cold bleak air forlorn;
And her clusters are berries of briony
That cling round a wither'd thorn.