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Poem by Jean Ingelow
A Song in Three Parts
1. The white broom flatt'ring her flowers in calm June weather, 'O most sweet wear; Forty-eight weeks of my life do none desire me, Four am I fair,' Quoth the brown bee 'In thy white wear Four thou art fair. A mystery Of honeyed snow In scented air The bee lines flow Straight unto thee. Great boon and bliss All pure I wis, And sweet to grow Ay, so to give That many live. Now as for me, I,' quoth the bee, 'Have not to give, Through long hours sunny Gathering I live: Aye debonair Sailing sweet air After my fare, Bee-bread and honey. In thy deep coombe, O thou white broom, Where no leaves shake, Brake, Bent nor clover, I a glad rover, Thy calms partake, While winds of might From height to height Go bodily over. Till slanteth light, And up the rise Thy shadow lies, A shadow of white, A beauty-lender Pathetic, tender. Short is thy day? Answer with 'Nay,' Longer the hours That wear thy flowers Than all dull, cold Years manifold That gift withhold. A long liver, O honey-giver, Thou by all showing Art made, bestowing, I envy not Thy greater lot, Nor thy white wear. But, as for me, I,' quoth the bee, 'Never am fair.' II. The nightingale lorn of his note in darkness brooding Deeply and long, 'Two sweet months spake the heart to the heart. Alas! all's over, O lost my song.' One in the tree, 'Hush now! Let be: The song at ending Left my long tending Over als Let be, let us go Across the wan sea. The little ones care not, And I fare not Amiss with thee. Thou hast sung all, This hast thou had. Love, be not sad; It shall befall Assuredly, When the bush buddeth And the bank studdeth— Where grass is sweet And damps do fleet, Her delicate beds With daisy heads That the Stars Seven Leaned down from heaven Shall sparkling mark In the warm dark Thy most dear strain Which ringeth aye true— Piercing vale, croft Lifted aloft Dropt even as dew With a sweet quest To her on the nest When damps we love Fall from above. 'Art thou asleep? Answer me, answer me, Night is so deep Thy right fair form I cannot see; Answer me, answer me, Are the eggs warm? Is't well with thee?' Ay, this shall be Assuredly. Ay, thou full fain In the soft rain Shalt sing again.' III. A fair wife making her moan, despised, forsaken, Her good days o'er; 'Seven sweet years of my life did I live belov褬 Seven—no more.' Then Echo woke—and spoke 'No more—no more,' And a wave broke On the sad shore When Echo said 'No more,' Nought else made reply, Nor land, nor loch, nor sky Did any comfort try, But the wave spread Echo's faint tone Alone, All down the desolate shore, 'No more—no more.'
Jean Ingelow's other poems:
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