A Shropsire Lad >> Poem of the Day.

A Shropsire Lad, IV

  1. E. Housman – 1859-1936


Wake: the silver dusk returning

    Up the beach of darkness brims,

And the ship of sunrise burning

    Strands upon the eastern rims.

Wake: the vaulted shadow shatters,

    Trampled to the floor it spanned,

And the tent of night in tatters

    Straws the sky-pavilioned land.

Up, lad, up, ‘tis late for lying;

    Hear the drums of morning play;

Hark, the empty highways crying

    ‘Who’ll beyond the hills away?’

Towns and countries woo together,

    Forelands beacon, belfries call;

Never lad that trod on leather

    Lived to feast his heart with all.

Up, lad: thews that lie and cumber

    Sunlit pallets never thrive;

Morns abed and daylight slumber

    Were not meant for man alive.

Clay lies still, but blood’s a rover;

    Breath’s a ware that will not keep.

Up, lad: when the journey’s over

    There’ll be time enough to sleep.

This poem is in the public domain.

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