Alfred Edward Housman

Last Poems. 7. In Valleys Green and Still

In valleys green and still
        Where lovers wander maying
They hear from over hill
        A music playing.

Behind the drum and fife,
        Past hawthornwood and hollow,
Through earth and out of life
        The soldiers follow.

The soldier’s is the trade:
        In any wind or weather
He steals the heart of maid
        And man together.

The lover and his lass
        Beneath the hawthorn lying
Have heard the soldiers pass,
        And both are sighing.

And down the distance they
        With dying note and swelling
Walk the resounding way
        To the still dwelling.

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