William Barnes ( )

Third Collection. Tweil

The rick ov our last zummers haulèn
 Now vrom greys a-feäded dark,
An off the barken raïls a-vallèn,
 Day by day, the rottèn bark.
But shorts the time our works do stand,
So feäirs we put em out ov hand.
Vor time a-passèn, wet an dry,
Do spweïl em wi his changèn sky,
The while wi strivèn hope, we men,
 Though a-ruèn times undoèn,
Still do tweil an tweil ageän.

In wall-zide sheädes, by leafy bowers,
 Underneath the swaÿèn tree,
O leäte, as round the bloomèn flowers,
 Lowly hummd the giddy bee,
My childerns small left voot did smite
Their tiny speäde, the while the right
Did trample on a deäisy head,
Bezïde the flowers dousty bed,
An though their work wer idle then,
 They a-smilèn, an a-tweilèn,
Still did work an work ageän.

Now their little limbs be stronger,
 Deeper now their vaïce do sound;
An their little veet be longer,
 An do tread on other ground;
An rust is on the little bleädes
 Ov all the broken-hafted speädes,
An flowrs that wer my hope an pride
Ha long agoo a-bloomd an died,
But still as I did leäbor then
 Vor love ov all them childern small,
Zoo now Ill tweil an tweil ageän.

When the smokeless tuns a-growèn
 Cwold as dew below the stars,
An when the vier noo mwores a-glowèn
 Red between the window bars,
We then do laÿ our weary heads
In peace upon their nightly beds,
An gie woone sock, wi heavèn breast,
An then breathe soft the breath o rest,
Till day do call the sons o men
 Vrom night-sleeps blackness, vull o sprackness,
Out abroad to tweil ageän.

Where the vaïce o the winds is mildest,
 In the plaïn, their stroke is keen;
Where their dreatnèn vaïce is wildest,
 In the grove, the groves our screen.
An where the worold in their strife
Do dreatèn mwost our tweilsome life,
Why there Almighty ceäre mid cast
A better screen ageän the blast.
Zoo I woont live in fear o men,
 But, man-neglected, God-directed,
Still wull tweil an tweil ageän.

William Barnes's other poems:
  1. Third Collection. The Little Worold
  2. Second Collection. Moonlight on the Door
  3. Third Collection. Good Night
  4. Second Collection. The Scud
  5. Third Collection. What John wer a-tellèn

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