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Dost thou idly ask to hear
  At what gentle seasons
Nymphs relent, when lovers near
  Press the tenderest reasons?
Ah, they give their faith too oft
  To the careless wooer;
Maidens' hearts are always soft:
  Would that men's were truer!

Woo the fair one, when around
  Early birds are singing;
When, o'er all the fragrant ground.
  Early herbs are springing:
When the brookside, bank, and grove,
  All with blossoms laden,
Shine with beauty, breathe of love,--
  Woo the timid maiden.

Woo her when, with rosy blush,
  Summer eve is sinking;
When, on rills that softly gush,
  Stars are softly winking;
When, through boughs that knit the bower,
  Moonlight gleams are stealing;
Woo her, till the gentle hour
  Wake a gentler feeling.

Woo her, when autumnal dyes
  Tinge the woody mountain;
When the dropping foliage lies
  In the weedy fountain;
Let the scene, that tells how fast
  Youth is passing over,
Warn her, ere her bloom is past,
  To secure her lover.

Woo her, when the north winds call
  At the lattice nightly;
When, within the cheerful hall,
  Blaze the fagots brightly;
While the wintry tempest round
  Sweeps the landscape hoary,
Sweeter in her ear shall sound
  Love's delightful story.

© William Cullen Bryant