“On Wenlock Edge” Poem 31 from ‘A Shropshire Lad’ by A.E. Housman

Poem 39 of 100 days of poetry

On Wenlock Edge the wood's in trouble;
His forest fleece the Wrekin heaves;
The gale, it plies the saplings double,
And thick on Severn snow the leaves.

'Twould blow like this through holt and hanger
When Uricon the city stood:
'Tis the old wind in the old anger,
But then it threshed another wood.

Then, 'twas before my time, the Roman
At yonder heaving hill would stare:
The blood that warms an English yeoman,
The thoughts that hurt him, they were there.

There, like the wind through woods in riot,
Through him the gale of life blew high;
The tree of man was never quiet:
Then 'twas the Roman, now 'tis I.

The gale, it plies the saplings double,
It blows so hard, 'twill soon be gone:
To-day the Roman and his trouble
Are ashes under Uricon.

Thanks for listening 🙂

The Character of a Happy Life — Poem by Sir Henry Wotton

Poem 38 of 100 days of poetry

The Character of a Happy Life — Sir Henry Wotton. 1568–1639

How happy is he born and taught
That serveth not another's will;
Whose armour is his honest thought,
And simple truth his utmost skill!

Whose passions not his masters are;
Whose soul is still prepared for death,
Untied unto the world by care
Of public fame or private breath;

Who envies none that chance doth raise,
Nor vice; who never understood
How deepest wounds are given by praise;
Nor rules of state, but rules of good;

Who hath his life from rumours freed;
Whose conscience is his strong retreat;
Whose state can neither flatterers feed,
Nor ruin make oppressors great;

Who God doth late and early pray
More of His grace than gifts to lend;
And entertains the harmless day
With a religious book or friend;

—This man is freed from servile bands
Of hope to rise or fear to fall:
Lord of himself, though not of lands,
And having nothing, yet hath all.

Thanks for listening 🙂

The Parting – Sonnet by Michael Drayton

Poem 37 in 100 days of poetry

Since there 's no help, come let us kiss and part—
Nay, I have done, you get no more of me;
And I am glad, yea, glad with all my heart,
That thus so cleanly I myself can free.
Shake hands for ever, cancel all our vows,
And when we meet at any time again,
Be it not seen in either of our brows
That we one jot of former love retain.
Now at the last gasp of Love's latest breath,
When, his pulse failing, Passion speechless lies,
When Faith is kneeling by his bed of death,
And Innocence is closing up his eyes,
—Now if thou wouldst, when all have given him over,
From death to life thou might'st him yet recover.

Thanks for listening 🙂

Thoughts in a Churchyard – Poem by John Clare

Poem 36 of 100 days of poetry

THOUGHTS IN A CHURCH-YARD - John Clare

Ah! happy spot, how still it seems
Where crowds of buried memories sleep;
How quiet Nature o’er them dreams,
’Tis but our troubled thoughts that weep.
Life’s book shuts here--its page is lost
With them, and all its busy claims,
The poor are from its memory crost,
The rich leave nothing but their names.

There rest the weary from their toil;
There lie the troubled, free from care;
Who through the strife of life’s turmoil
Sought rest, and only found it there.
With none to fear his scornful brow,
There sleeps the master with the slave;
And heedless of all titles now,
Repose the honoured and the brave.

There rest the miser and the heir,
Both careless who their wealth shall reap;
E’en love finds cure for heart-aches here,
And none enjoy a sounder sleep.
The fair one far from folly’s freaks,
As quiet as her neighbour seems,
Unconscious now of rosy cheeks,
Without a rival in her dreams.

Strangers alike to joy and strife,
Heedless of all its past affairs.
They’re blotted from the list of life,
And absent from its teazing cares.
Grief, joy, hope, fear, and all their crew
That haunt the memory’s living mind,
Ceased, when they could no more pursue,
And left a painless blank behind.

Life’s _ignis fatuus_ light is gone,
No more to lead their hopes astray;
Care’s poisoned cup is drain’d and done,
And all its follies past away.
The bill’s made out, the reck’ning paid,
The book is cross’d, the business done;
On them the last demand is made,
And heaven’s eternal peace is won.

Thanks for listening 🙂

The Conclusion – Poem by Sir Walter Raleigh

Poem 35 in my 100 days of poetry series

Even such is Time, that takes in trust
Our youth, our joys, our all we have,
And pays us but with earth and dust;
Who in the dark and silent grave,
When we have wander'd all our ways,
Shuts up the story of our days;
But from this earth, this grave, this dust,
My God shall raise me up, I trust.

Thanks for listening 🙂

Loveliest of Trees the Cherry Now – Poem by A.E.Housman

Poem 34 in my 100 days of poetry series

A Shropshire Lad — II
Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now, of my threescore years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy springs a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.

Thanks for listening 🙂

Where My Books Go – Poem by W. B. Yeats

Poem 33 in my 100 days of poetry

Where My Books Go — W.B.Yeats
All the words that I utter,
And all the words that I write,
Must spread out their wings untiring,
And never rest in their flight,
Till they come where your sad, sad heart is,
And sing to you in the night,
Beyond where the waters are moving,
Storm-darken'd or starry bright.

Thanks for listening 🙂

The Way Through the Woods – Poem by Rudyard Kipling

Poem 31 of 100 days of poetry

They shut the road through the woods
Seventy years ago.
Weather and rain have undone it again,
And now you would never know
There was once a road through the woods
Before they planted the trees.
It is underneath the coppice and heath,
And the thin anemones.
Only the keeper sees
That, where the ring-dove broods,
And the badgers roll at ease,
There was once a road through the woods.

Yet, if you enter the woods
Of a summer evening late,
When the night-air cools on the trout-ringed pools
Where the otter whistles his mate,
(They fear not men in the woods,
Because they see so few.)
You will hear the beat of a horse's feet,
And the swish of a skirt in the dew,
Steadily cantering through
The misty solitudes,
As though they perfectly knew
The old lost road through the woods.
But there is no road through the woods.

Thanks for listening 🙂

The Tyger – Poem by William Blake

Poem 30 of 100 days of poetry

Tyger Tyger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies.
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand, dare seize the fire?

And what shoulder, and what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? and what dread feet?

What the hammer? what the chain,
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp,
Dare its deadly terrors clasp!

When the stars threw down their spears
And water'd heaven with their tears:
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

Tyger Tyger burning bright,
In the forests of the night:
What immortal hand or eye,
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

Thanks for listening 🙂